Skip to main content

Kolam - A South Indian Art Form


When you look at things a little closely you tend to realize there is so much more to the small things we do every day. Take art for instance. Isn't art everywhere? Well, of course like beauty, it lies in the eyes of the beholder but I am sure you can find art in many things around you/ in those things you do.

The tradition of drawing beautiful geometrical patterns using rice flour or chalk flour has been in practice in South Indian homes since ancient times. This art is called ‘Kolam’ and women draw this patterned art on the wet ground or porch outside their houses every morning and evening. It is more of a custom here down south. If only Da Vinci and Picasso had known of such a thing, they could have got more perception to their artwork.

Some of the patterns drawn are unbelievably complicated and such pain is taken during special festivals and occasions in India. ‘Pongal’, the harvest festival of Tamil Nadu sees Hindu women drawing up several amazing designs of ‘Kolam’ around their houses.

Here are some Kolam patterns that my sweet friend Shruthi sketched for me in like 10 minutes!!! I can’t help but admire her creativity and patience. 


Kolam - An art form less known outside India

Neli Kolam / Kolam with curves

Lamp Design

This one may look simple but when I saw her connect the dots in style, it was totally jaw-dropping


When I asked my grandma what the significance of drawing a Kolam was, she told me it feeds thousands of ants every day and it is a great exercise as one has to bend, twist and turn so as to get a perfect Kolam. She told me it signifies a welcome sign as it is drawn in front of the house to welcome guests who come home. So we do it for our well being and the well being of those little ants and insects that feed on the powder. That makes perfect sense.





Have you ever tried drawing a Kolam? Try out simple patterns and work your way up to the really cool ones. Google does help you with that too! :)



Comments

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

'Yo-Yo' Tribe - A Meme

OK. Time for some fun, folks! Walk down the streets of any city, you are sure to find weirdos of all kinds. I am not being judgmental here, but trust me, there are a bunch of people who think of themselves as the coolest tribe on earth and the cool-ness is defined by their hair-dos and hair styles.  Let me give you some examples here...

Beginning the meme with a Zen-like look. I should admit that this look is more 'yogic' than weird. But only until he doesn't untie that bun on top! I name them the Zen tribe! :D
This style screams attention; attention from railroad signals to be specific. There are so many parallel tracks for trains to ply! The Awesome Railroad Tribe!

Well, well, I only get to see between my strands of hair and this is called 'Looking- through-the-hair-look'. "Are you smiling? winking? blushing? I don't have a clue!"




"Fine, I am growing a pine forest in my head and yes, it is fall time and some trees are starting to change color. I be…

Make Up and Me (Not Me)

They say people who don't know to dance have two left feet. Although, I might have two left feet myself, what is more interesting is I might actually have two left hands.

Okay, I understand that's funny but here is why:

If you are a girl or a boy or a boy who looks like a girl, you would probably know that it is a thing now to have a makeup blog or vlog or youtube channel in your name. I bumped into this world of cosmetics, beauty blogs and tutorials only a few months ago. For those who don't know about it, let me tell you, it is a crazy, ruthless and unbelievable world.



Heard of these? Snail slime masks, Placenta hair masks, Seaweed bathing creams, Microblading.... and endless other such insane stuff. These are insane but quite popular among beauty enthusiasts and they even swear by the benefits of such products.

These are otherwise cringe-worthy products in my world. I use gramflour+tumeric face mask, Coconut oil hair mask and  a normal, cheap bathing soap and my skin i…

[Home and Decor] :: Ideas for a perfect home

I have long been envisioning a place which is soulful and dreamy; a place that would like to call home.The essentials of my idea of a perfect home are:
Family and friends – They are the soulfulness and the life of every home. They are indeed those elements that make a ‘house’ a ‘sweet home’. Can’t do without’em!
Space – I am stuck with this space conundrum every time I enter an under-construction building. There seems to be a gap here. There were homes in earlier days which advocated spatial freedom and now everyone seem to look for compact homes. Think about living in concrete boxes?! I understand the money-factor involved but some with enough and more are unwilling to go for a spacious place too. The heritage houses of south India are perfect examples of space management when it comes to homes.
Sunlight - Who wants to live in a cave or a scary house?! In Vasthu Shastra and Feng Shui, we would notice a simple yet striking similarity which encompasses the need for sunlight to flow throu…