Rangoli in new form: portrait making

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Indore, Oct 10 (UNI) 'Rangoli', a form of sandpainting decoration that uses finely ground white powder and colours, is commonly used outside Indian homes but a Nagpur-resident artist can also create portraits using the medium.

Veerendra Mehra, who has been honoured by the Chhattisgarh government's 'Chhattisgarh Shri' Award for his unique art, told UNI here today that Rangoli has been drawn in entire country in the courtyards, main entry gates or worship places to welcome their guests or appease their deities.

Mr Mehra, who arrived here to exhibit his art, has already displayed it in more than 1,500 places of India and Nepal with sole desire of publicising his art. The artist also provided training in Rangoli portrait making at several places in the country.

''Computers has been widely used to draw the Rangoli patterns but computer cannot replace the art,'' he said, adding that unfortunately tradition is being declined.

The term rangoli is derived from words rang -- colour -- and aavalli -- 'coloured creepers' or 'row of colours'.

Rangoli is the popular floor art of India. It is an auspicious art of decorating courtyards and prayer halls in India drawn mainly by women and girls.

Some women use rice flour to draw a Rangoli which is the traditional medium to be used while others use sandstone or limestone powder.

The designs are then coloured with various coloured powdered dyes UNI XC-KV RL BD1738

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