Warli Painting

If you’ve ever tried to renovate your house or went out on a hunt for traditional artifacts, you might have come across the term “Warli paintings” or “Warli art, and you would want to know that what is warli art & what is warli painting? Read furthermore about the warli art origin, warli art form and find out the great marvels of Warli paintings and their origins!


The great Warli folk painting is a form of tribal art mainly created by tribal people in the northern region of the Sahyadri Range, which comprises cities like Jawhar, Palghar, Dahanu, Talasari, Mokhada, and Vikramgarh of Palghar district, in India. This warli tribal painting art form first originated in Maharashtra, where it is still practised frequently. It is believed to be one of the oldest kinds of art forms in history. It is pretty popular in India and has a distinct charm everywhere it is expressed, but it has not gained much recognition outside its territory. Warli art of Maharashtra is a set of basic geometric shapes: a circle, a triangle, and a square.


If you are curious about warli art then, the warli painting origin is fascinating. The Warli tribe is one of the largest tribes in India, located outside of the city of dreams- Mumbai. Even though they were located close to one of India’s largest cities, the Warli rejected contemporary cultures and lifestyles.

Warli Painting Information – These paintings seem to be nothing more than Warli figures drawn in whites on rich dark walls to the untrained eye, but a closer inspection shows that Warli is far more than meets the eye. To many, it may seem like just a simple art form of India. Still, the Warli tribes located in mountains and coastal regions in and around Maharashtra and Gujarat’s borders are warli painting states. The origin of Warli art can be traced back to around 3000 BC and seems to have an enigmatic appeal to it. Even though the tribal art style dates back to the 10th century A.D., the Warli paintings form was not known until the 1970s. Although the primary way of life and a significant food source for the tribe was farming, they had great respect for nature and wildlife for the resources they provided for life. On various occasions, this type of painting was mainly centred around the concept of mother nature and its elements. Quite often, multiple parts of nature are the focal points that are further accentuated in these paintings. A fascinating fact about Warli artists is that they used their clay huts as the backdrop for their masterpieces, much like how ancient people utilised their cave walls as canvases


When one looks at a Warli painting, the intricate geometric patterns of flowers, hunting scenes, wedding rituals, and any other activities make the paintings stand out. A certain appeal to the painting comes from its beautiful yet delicate patterns. The current trend among fashionistas and home goods brands is to choose these designs and models. Warli tribal art can be found on a variety of products and places around the world.

People from Maharashtra have a special sense of sentiment attached to warli paintings of Maharashtra because they’ve seen them on the walls of various rural schools and homes way before they gained popularity.


Warli paintings are traditionally practised on mud walls with white paste. This white paste is rice, water, and gum that acts as a binding catalyst. Further bamboo sticks, chewed at the end, are used to act as a paintbrush. They usually carry a close resemblance to prehistoric cave paintings. If you were to perform a warli art background today, you could use white paint to draw the caricatures with an ochre background.

Warli paintings are known for having a limited design vocabulary that often consists of dots and dashes arranged in a linear manner to portray a scene. One of the most prominent aspects of Warli art is the Tarpa dance.


Over, the years Warli paintings have evolved drastically. Initially, these beautiful masterpieces were curated on mud walls with a paste of rice and water that was used to paint the characters on the canvas and chewed bamboo sticks were used to act as paintbrushes; since then warli painting characters came into the picture. But, on the other hand, today the conventional paints and paintbrushes can create an end product just the same!
Other than that, Warli paintings are not just restricted to the traditional mud walls anymore. They’ve expanded on a great scale in the home decor industry and seem to be growing day by day. From pots and vases to bedsheets and curtain prints, they are becoming increasingly popular and highly liked. The textile and clothing industry is fond of this beautiful Indian art form, not just the home decor world. These days witnessing a beautiful Warli painting printed saree adorned by women on the street or the fashion show ramp is a common sight that everyone very much likes!

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