Saturday, August 21, 2010

Folk art- shedi kale

Shedi Kale: Folk art from the river bank


Shedi Kale is a folk art practiced by the Gamokkalu/patgararu community in Uttara kannada district of Karnataka. Gamokkalu from coastal Karnataka, who lives in the bank of the Sharavati river uses naturally/locally available wet clay paste (sheadi-the thin paste of white clay) to draw the strokes. Shedi is available in nature in the local areas. Sankrati is the ideal time to collect the clay. They also prepare natural black colour by using raagi and burnt dry coconut.

The lines and patterns on these paintings each symbolize an aspect of nature or depict the religious, social agricultural practices of the community. The drawing has been seen on the walls, floors, doorframes, doorsteps and in front of tulsi katte .

Natures brush

The main feature of shedi’s motif is 3, 4, or 5 strokes with a special hand made natural brush called gerke or jaali sippe. It has got 3 or 4 teeth made from betel nut’s outer husk.(see picture).It would help to draw 2 or 5 lines /strokes or curves at a time.


This art takes place in marriages and festivals.

In the marriage ceremony kalasada shedi, petge shedi, hasagara have got the symbolic aspects of rituals . “hasgara”is drawn on the wall where the bridegroom seated

,Kalasada shedi is drawn in the place where the kalasada gindi is kept. Thus Shedi has got symbolic and ritualistic values.It communicated through art expression!!

Their motifs are mainly of lines strokes and curves. They rarely use human motifs.

 The motifs has name according to the occasion and events. Singara represents the betel nuts flower which is the integral part of their life.

 Mat weaving is interlingual part of  gamokklu community . It represented in kadki shedi which shows the weaving pattern.

Hanmakka -our master artisan and resource person has been sharing her indigenous knowledge  with  more than 1000 students /participants every year.Her creativity expands from folk art to mat weaving to folk literature.She she could sing  tribal Ramayana and Mahabharata songs throughout the day.We have been  35 years long relationship with her.

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