The Saura Painting of Orissa

The Saura tribal paintings is a style of mural painting, which is indigenous to the Saura tribes of Odisha. They are also known as ‘Italons,’ ‘ikons’ or ‘’ekons,’ and hold religious values for the tribe.

The paintings are worshipped during special events, such as childbirth, weddings, and harvest. Traditionally, these ‘ikons’ were drawn by the priestly class, the ‘Kudangs.’ While drawing, they would also explain the nature and symbolism

The Saura paintings feature mostly pregnant characters performing routine chores; livelihood; and entertainment. Popular motifs include people, equines, celestial bodies, and the tree of life.

The backdrop of Saura painting designs is made of red or yellow ochre earth. The colours are applied using bamboo shoots. The colours in the Saura tribal paintings are natural dyes and leaf & flower extracts.