Saturday, July 9, 2011

Folk Art- Hase Chittara

Hase chitra  or hase chittara  is a folk art practiced by the Deewaru community in Shimoga, Sagara   and Uttara kannada district of Karnataka.

The walls are colored with red mud found abundantly in the region and designs are drawn in white paint derived from rice paste and white mud.
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, doorframes, and doorsteps in the villages of malenadu region.

Materials used
The materials used for this art is natural .The community makes its own colours  deriving from natural sources such as bark of trees, wild Barrie, seeds, rocks, minerals, and vegetables. Kemmannu (red earth), akki hittu (rice flour), masi kenda (coal), kaare kai (one kind of berry), guragekaai (which gives yellow colour) hittu, Sunna (lime stone), turmaric, milk etc has been used to prepare white,black,red and yellow natural colors.

 While the designs on the paintings are common across the entire community the paintings are divided in to three types according to the use of colours. They are bili hase, kappu hase, kemmannu hase.
The drawing has been seen on the walls ,door frames,and window frames. It can also been done on Bamboo basket .Genarally the base is Kemmannu(red earth)While dwcorating the bamboo basket the base has been prepared by applying the mixture of red earth and cow dung,

To draw the lines the community use a natural brush made by grass straw and a natural fiber  .Now the artists who learnt this art from the community uses paiting brush and artificial colours .
The original brush:
Our artisan Kanne from Siddapura,Uttara kannada uses this hand made natural  brush which is considered the original way of painting in this community .

 They use straw and a natural fiber to make brush. The fiber will be inserted in the straw and tie a knot to keep it on place.

  One needs a lot of patience to draw these lines. Women have mostly done this art.

This art takes place in marriages and festivals (bhoomi hunnime habba).In bhoomi hunnime festival women decorate the bamboo baskets with this art. The base has been prepared by applying the mixture of red earth (kemmannu)and cowdung on the basket. They draw hase chitra by using finely grounded riceflour on this basket.

The common motifs are seete mudi,bhattada saalu, kuchhu saalu,maduve pallakki,dibbana hakkigalu, ettugalu,tirugu mane,gombe saalu,banave etc which has been taken from daily life .
In the marriage ceremony Hase chitra is drawn on the wall where the ritual takes place


The common motifs in the marriage are 

pallakki(carriage).dibbana hakkigalu(twin birds/love birds),

bride and bridegroom etc. 


  1. Hello,

    Thank you for writing about it in detail. I was looking for authentic native artists who are may be in bangalore or around? Needed a few motifs for our interiors... Please do mail me on sanjana.sriram@gmail when you are free. Your help will be much appreciated :)

  2. Can something like this be made and shipped to the USA ? What would it take ? Please let me know. Thanks ,
    Roopa Santosh.

  3. ಅಮ್ಮ, ಸಂಧ್ಯಾಉದಯ ಇದು ನಿಮ್ಮ ಬ್ಲಾಗ್ ಎಂಬ ನಂಬಿಕೆ. ನೋಡಿ ಸಂತೃಪ್ತಳಾದೆ.ನನ್ನ ಬ್ಲಾಗಿಗೆ ಜೊಡಿಸುತ್ತೇನೆ.

  4. Such a beautiful art. Thanks for providing details

  5. Hi there,

    I'm writing on behalf of Meghshala (, an NPO based in India working to introduce multimedia driven lessons in low-income government school classrooms. Could we have your permission to use the photos on "Hase Chittara" in one of our lessons? We would greatly appreciate it!

    Email Id :

  6. Nice write up, yes it's a beautiful art form.
    I have recently learned this art and enjoying practicing it :)


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