The Beautiful And Ancient Indian Art Of Rangoli

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Photograph by Chetan Karkhanis

Rangoli is a traditional Indian art form in which vibrant and elaborate patterns are created on the ground of homes, courtyards, or even in the middle of the road depending on the occasion. Typically created during festivals for decorative and celebratory purposes, Rangoli are also constructed by those in need of good luck. The materials used in creating Rangoli are all sourced straight from nature, including naturally-colored sand, flower and rice, as well as flower petals and a variety of other ephemeral materials. The vibrant colors are achieved by using vermilion, turmeric, and a variety of other ingredients as a natural dye.

The best time to witness the Rangoli as they fill the streets of India would be during the Onam, Pongal and Diwali festivals, but also during weddings and other forms of special gathering. Traditionally, the Rangoli are created by women who pass on their knowledge of the art form through the generations. Differences in color and design represent the different aspects in the traditions, practices and folklore that are unique to each area of India.


A charming folk art tradition in India involves creating geometrical designs on the floor of living rooms, courtyards, or out in the streets. Called Rangoli, these creations are typically made during Indian festivals for decorative purposes and to bring good luck. And the materials to make them are sourced directly from nature. It may be hard to believe, but these extraordinary designs are comprised of a dazzling combination of naturally-colored rice, flour and sand, as well as flowers and other ephemeral materials.

The Rangoli motives fill the streets of India during the DiwaliOnam and Pongal festivals but also during weddings and special gatherings. A millenary practice, the Rangolis are traditionally made by women, who pass on their knowledge from generation to generation. Sacred and ancient, the different designs reflect traditions, folklore and practices that are unique to each area.

The base material is made from dry granulated rice or flour naturally dyed using indoor (vermilion) and haldi (turmeric), among other ingredients. But sand, petals and flowers are also included with awe-inspiring results. These stunning, detailed and heavenly designs are definitely a must-see for anyone visiting India.

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Via My Modern Met

Photos by Ghost in the machine