Gond Art


Gond art is a form of painting from folk and tribal art that is practiced by one of the largest tribes of India - the Gond - who are predominantly from Madhya Pradesh, but also can be found in pockets of Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhatisgarh and Odisha. The history of the Gond people dates nearly 1400 years back. They are Dravidian and their origin can be traced to the pre-Aryan era. They refer to them as Koi or Koiture. Their language is related to Telugu and other Dravidian languages.


According to the Gond belief system, all things are inhabited by a spirit and, consequently, are sacred. Gond paintings are a reflection of man's close connection with his natural surroundings. While a majority of Gond paintings do take inspiration from nature, it isn't the only source of ideas. They also turn to the myths and legends of India or showcase images from the daily lives and dreams in their art.


The work of Gond artists is rooted in their folk tales and culture, and thus storytelling is a strong element of every painting. Paintings as well as other art forms have always been quite popular with tribal people in India, especially the Gond tribe. The Gond people have a belief that viewing a good image begets good luck and they decorate the walls and floors of their houses with traditional tattoos and motifs. Among the Gond, it is the most prominent among the Pardhan Gonds who are renowned for their artistic skills, be it painting or music. Gond paintings have also been used by the Gond people as a way to record their history.

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