India | Kerala


Kalamezhuthu is another form of ‘Rangoli’ or ‘Kolam’ drawn on the floors of Hindu houses. This is a unique temple art of Kerala. It is otherwise called ‘Dhulee Chithram’. The canvas used is the floor. It possesses strict specific traditional patterns and colors. Kalamezhuthu is drawn only with hand and no tools are used instead. Natural colors made from vegetables and minerals are used. Rice (white), turmeric (yellow), charcoal from paddy husk (black), mixture of turmeric powder and lime (red), and powdered leaves (green) are the usual items used for colors. The pattern of the drawing changes according to the occasion.

Kalamezhuthu is done as a part of the worship of Devi, Naga and Sastha in temples. It is especially done during Naga puja. Offerings such as ‘Nirapara (heap of rice)’ and other grains are placed in its respective places. The room will be decorated with flowers, garlands and leaves. Only oil lamps are used to light up the function. During the rituals the dancer erases the entire drawing with tender palm fronds.

[Source all india (80) 18-Feb-05]

Updated on 7th June, 2005


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