Mithila Paintings from India
Tribal painting on paper from India, showing scenes of animals and village life. Mithila paintings come from rural Bihar, northern India. They depict legends and myths of the area and are painted by women on the walls of the village houses.
Peacocks, birds, trees and flowers feature in the paintings which can also be descriptions of everyday life and village ritual. Bihar is one of the poorest states in India and in the mid sixties an aid worker encouraged the women to paint on paper so they could sell their work to supplement their income.
Mithila paintings have been exhibited in New York galleries and some of the women are now recognised artists whose work can be seen in museums and permanent collections.