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Art and Craft

Indian Art and Craft – Manjusha Art/Bhagalpur Painting

Indian Art and Craft – Manjusha Art/Bhagalpur Painting

Manjusha Art is an ancient Indian art form which is also known as Bhagalpur Painting. It is equally important as the Madhubani art. They are also referred to as Snake Paintings by foreigners. It is a folk art of Bhagalpur, Bihar in India dated back to the 7th century.

A Folk Art of the Ang region it is originated from a folk story of Bihula-Bishari and has religious significance of Bishari Puja. The tale is that of Bihula who saved her husband from the deity’s wrath and a snake-bite and also of Bishari or Mansa the snake goddess.


There are three colours used in Manjusha Art – Pink, Green and Yellow. These five Borders are very important in Manjusha Art – Lehriya, Belpatr, Srp Ki Ladi, Tribhuj and Mokha. The characters are displayed like the letter X in the English alphabet. The major motifs are Snake, Champa Flower, Sun, Moon, Elephant, Turtle, Fish, Maina bird, Kamal Flower, Kalash pot, Shiv Ling, Arrrow, Tree etc. The major characters are Lord Shiva, Mansa Devi (Bishari), Bihula, Bala, Hanuman, Chandu Saudagar.

Picture used for illustration only – Credit: Archana Sharma/

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Born and brought up in Kerala, I did my schooling in Kerala and graduated (B.Sc Physics) from the Calicut University. I have worked with a Swedish Company from 1994 to 2015, as a Senior Project Manager in their Group IT Division in Dubai. This blog is the result of my strong desire to communicate with others, sharing what I know and what I could gather from various sources.


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