Hema Malini seeks support for Sanjhi arts from Mathura-Vrindavan; all you need to know about the art form

Lok Sabha member and actor Hema Malini asked the government on Wednesday if it has any plan to encourage arts from Mathura-Vrindavan involved in Sanjhi art.
Wearing a sari with Madhubani art on it to explain her demand more effectively, the BJP MP said, “Arts from all across the country including Madhubani painters from Bihar are encouraged through textile products. I want to ask the Textile Miner if there is any plan to do the same for the arts from Mathura-Vrindavan indulged in Sanjhi Art.”
Sanjhi art is a unique craft form that features exquisite designs and intricate picture motifs, cut into paper. Originated in Mathura in the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, Sanjhi painting reached its peak in Vrindavan.

“Sanjhi art started in Dwapar Yuga and has reached the kalayuga. The government promoting Sanjhi art will only help us grow further. People will become more aware of this art and it will reach more people. A lot of people believe that it is just a rangoli or a stencil art, but it is more than that. We also teach this art form to as many as possible, free of cost,” Ashutosh Verma, a sixth-generation Sanjhi art whose family has been practising Sanjhi art for 300 years, told .

Hory and significance
Rooted in the folk culture of the region, it was popularised the Vaishnava temples in the 15th and 16th centuries, according to It was traditionally used to make rangolis in Lord Krishna temples, especially Brahmin priests. However, the art of Sanjhi painting is now practised in only a few temples of India, with the Radharamana temple of Vrindavan being one of them.
The art of Sanjhi painting has a special significance in mythology too. It is believed that Radha used to paint her walls with Sanjhi art to attract Lord Krishna’s attention. For the same, she used coloured stones, metal foils and flowers to paint her walls that were plastered with cow dung. Similarly, other gopis of Vrindavan also started painting the same way to attract the Lord.

It grew immensely during the 16th and 17th centuries when the walls and floors of temples were decorated with Sanjhi motifs. During the Mughal period, several contemporary themes were added to the art for greater perspective. Today, you can find Sanjhi artworks in many homes and spaces, including Delhi metro stations. During the 2010 Commonwealth Games, the pictograms were inspired traditional Sanjhi art.

How is it made?
To make a Sanjhi design, stencils are made on paper — mostly handmade — using specially designed scissors. These prepared stencils are then placed on flat surfaces or water, where the art wishes to draw the art. It is followed putting dry colours over it and then lifting the stencils carefully.
Some of the common Sanjhi motifs include peacocks, bullock carts, horses, cows, butterflies and trees.
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