The love for gold in our nation of many diverse cultures and traditions is timeless. Whether it is in the form of exquisitely decorated uncut diamonds, Tanjore art, temple sculptures, Meenakari work, or the rebirth of vintage royal pieces following current trends. In today’s blog, we will explore Thanjavur paintings, often known as Golden Tanjore art. Take a seat and don your knowledge glasses to learn everything there is to know about a Tanjore painting here at Rooftop!

Tanjore Art
Image Credits: Artisera (1); Memeraki (2)

One of the most expensive and precious metals, gold has long existed to crown Indian culture and customs. India’s gold jewellery represents several cultures through its designs and regional cultural values. Gold is essential in Indian homes, everyone, whether wealthy 16th century during the Nayaka Governors. They presided over the vast empire of the Vijayanagara Rayas in southern India. Indian paintings influenced the Tanjore paintings from that era. Rich or poor Gold is always a staple. Throughout their gold jewellery designs and collections, several Indian artworks have aimed to produce the most exquisite collections. The collection evokes ancient, timeless traditions and has honoured historical icons.


Thanjavur in Tamil Madu inspires Tanjore painting, a celebration of the region’s rich artistic tradition. Although the art form has changed, primary Indian beauty inspires art lovers and many other artists. Indian paintings influenced the Golden Tanjore paintings from the 16th century when the Nayaka Governors ruled over the sizable empire of the Vijayanagara Rayas in southern India. The Nayakas were reserved patrons of the arts and literature. After seizing control of the region in 1676, Maratha kings encouraged the development of the arts and artists.

Tanjore Art
Image Credits: Madhurya (1); Utsavpedia (2)

Tanjore’s painting drew extensively on the various ethnic groups that supported the art form. Nonetheless, other well-known Vijayanagara school painting styles including the Tirupati and Kalamkari styles influence the Indian golden heritage. Paintings known as Tirupati depicted deities and were created in Tirupati’s renowned temple town using various mediums and techniques. 

Style And Intricacies

Tanjore Art
Image credits: Alamy (1); Dune Wellness Groups (2)

Tanjore paintings are well recognised for their rich representations of deities employing vivid colours and flashy ornaments, particularly gold foil. Golden Tanjore paintings are known as palagi Padam, which translates to “image on a wooden plank,”. The reason is they are primarily created on boards made from jackfruit or teak wood, even though the art form has experienced numerous alterations over the years. Tanjore paintings are known for their use of vivid colours and gold leaf embellishments. Moreover cut glass, pearls, and precious and semi-precious stones as additional decorative elements.

Global Standing Of Golden Tanjore Art

Tanjore Art
Image Credits: Plano Public Library (1); Memeraki (2)

Undoubtedly Tanjore’s paintings continue to be popular today. They have seen tremendous commercialization in recent years and are now even sold in street markets. Even while the style of painting has lasted and is still widely used, many art lovers are worried about the general quality decline. Though encouraging, workshops and training programmes are being undertaken to ensure the art form thrives while preserving all the rich, traditional, and creative components that constitute the essence of Tanjore painting.

Indian art has a vibrant future and a rich history! Art is timeless and here at Rooftop, we have online workshops that you must attend and live into the world of art! 

Tanjore Art Fun fact
Image Credits: Ye Hai India

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