When you think of the tribal art of Maharashtra, you...Read More
Etymology: ‘Rogan’ in Persian translates to ‘oil-based’, referring to oil, which is the main medium used in creating Rogan art.
Origin: With its origin in Persia, Rogan Art travelled to Nirona village around 400 years ago. Nirona village is located in the middle of Kutch, a vast district of Gujarat.
Location: This art form thrives in the village of Nirona in the Kutch district of Gujarat. Earlier, this art form was practised in Baroda, Patna, Chowbari, Khavada, and Nasik; but now it’s only confined to the Kutch and Ahmedabad districts of Gujarat.
Relevance: This art form is seasonal and is used to decorate the garments of the bridal trousseau since Rogan art on textiles gives the impression of embroidery.
Significance: Since Rogan art originated in Persia, the technique of creating these paintings is well influenced by the place of origin. While the technique of this art form has stayed intact, its themes have changed from calligraphic art to geometric and floral motifs.
Culture and Societies: Rogan art was traditionally made on bridal trousseau like ‘ghagra’, ‘odhana’, ‘chabla’, and ‘dharajo’. They also designed items for dowry such as bedsheets, pillowcases, quilts etc.
Religious significance: Earlier, Persian alphabets were painted on textiles but no evidence of religious texts has been found yet. Since it’s an art form that has migrated from Persia to India, the Khatris of Kutch draw what is synonymous with the environment around them.
Style: Rogan designs are painted free-hand against a black or dark background making the highly pigmented colours stand out. The Khatri community of Kutch apply designs which are floral and geometric whereas the Hindu Khatri community of Ahmedabad make floral designs and paints motifs of birds.
Central motifs: Traditionally, geometric, floral, and calligraphic patterns were painted. Persian alphabets were drawn as calligraphic motifs but now floral and geometrical designs are painted. The ‘Tree of Life’ is one the most frequent and famous motifs painted in Rogan art.
The most drastic change this art form has undergone is the shift in means of production to meet the growing demands.
Apart from this, the application of this art form has expanded to a variety of products. It is no longer limited to just apparel; wall hangings and home decor items are now also adorned with Rogan art.
The Khatri family of Kutch, now in its eighth generation of artisans, is playing a crucial role in reviving this art form.