Aipan is the traditional art form of Kumaon - a Himalayan region in the state of Uttarakhand.In simple terms, Aipan could be described as a floor painting (rangoli). Aipan designs are mainly drawn at places of worship, along with the main entry door and the front courtyard of the house. The word "Aipan" is actually a derivative of the word "Arpan", a Sanskrit word. The actual meaning of Aipan is "Likhai" that means writing. This traditional folk art is specifically made by the women of Uttarakhand. Aipans have their own peculiarities in the way they are created and their cultural, religious and spiritual significance.
A paste of Geru ( laal mitti).Traditionally, Aipan is made with red ochre (Geru - laal mitti ) and rice paste (Biswar). Rice flour solution is made by soaking the rice and then grinding it. Once the Geru base is ready the artist draws the pattern free hand. The designs are made using the last three fingers of the right hand. Chowkies are made with mango wood and painted with special designs for each occasion. Design and motifs There are mainly two types of Aipan – aipan which is made on floor/doorstep and Chaukis. Aipan, ritual art, is made on floor and walls by dip drawn method. The Aipan is traditionally drawn for ceremonies of birth, marriage and many other festivals throughout the year. The painting patterns differ for each ceremony accordingly. The central design of the Aipan is considered as per ritual and has a traditional motif while the outer design can be extended or reduced to fit the space (red background).
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