(AN ART OF TRUST)









I found “Artisticessence” in colors and contours and I encountered divinity in ART


                                                                              ~Prachi Awasthi~



Every culture is defined by some artistic essence and their followers are the true patrons.  Kumauni culture of Uttarakhand is defined by its AIPAN ART.

I was born and brought up in a capital city and it is very difficult to learn about the culture of the state from where you come. My roots are from the land of gods and goddesses – Uttarakhand. I was 12, when I started noticing the beauty of AIPAN, my mother drew it on the entrance of the door, at the place of worship at home. I noticed it in all the places where Kumauni culture was prevalent. At that time, I was totally naïve. I never understood the quintessence of AIPAN in my Kumauni birth in the present Kalyuga.

An Aipan is an art of trust. It is drawn at the entrance of house, at the place of worship at home, at kitchen. Many of you might wonder upon the line I wrote (An aipan is an art of trust), how it could be an art of trust?

Well, Aipan is drawn on auspicious occasions like; Navratre, Diwali etc. It is the symbol of auspiciousness, on the pertinence, the positivity the colors will bring, the auspicious symbols drawn in an aipan would act like a magnet to bring happiness, health-wealth and optimism. A Kumauni house is and will be considered incomplete without Aipan, even if it is decorated with heavy expensive artifacts!

There are several designs that give the divinity in AIPAN art like SWASTIKA, Laxmi padchinha, Vasudhara. All of these have meanings like-

Swastika-   It’s the symbol of creation and progress. This Sanskrit word is aptly described through its name which says “LUCKY and AUSPICOUSS”. The four lines represents the four direction (NORTH, SOUTH, EAST AND WEST) which could be in other words: DHARMA(natural order), ARTHA(wealth), KAMA(desire) and MOKSHA(Liberation). It has the manifestation of Energy (SHAKTI).



Laxmi Padchinha-  As the name of the symbol conveys the essence of the  design. Laxmi is the goddess of Wealth and it is drawn at the entrance of the house, believing in the presence of goddess laxmi at home.

Vasudhara- drawn around the Tulsi plant(ocimum tenuiflorum), along with aipan art. The paste has to be made with red soil and rice and the blocks are drawn in odd numbers like (5,7,9,11).

(Many of you might consider all these designs, symbols to pagan symbol, well, well, there are a lot of pagan symbolism in Aipan art).

It’s not always necessary to appreciate art through ‘crafty words’, because the art itself spell bounds the emotions and the gives the momentary collapse of the ongoing situations.


4 thoughts on “AIPAN

    1. Who wouldn’t know about jim corbett?? ps- uttarakhand is a land of gods and goddesses. So it’s natural to find yogis having penance on such land. And i hope i’ve established the fact that i do know yoga. ’cause you see we all got some spiritual side in some way or the other, no? 😉


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