Three hundred years ago, an art form was learned accidently, by using a bamboo stylus as a pen .Today this art is practiced in volumes and artists have evolved it to the twentieth century. ‘Kalam’ meaning pen and ‘kari’ means craftsmanship. This art was seen and found in the Hindu temples. large panels of kalamkari depicting the episodes of Indian mythology were found in the temples, much like the churches abroad. The bands of travelling artists, who performed from place to place. They used Large bolts of canvas, to depict Gods and Goddesses and the scenes from the Hindu mythology were drawn and painted using this art since then the artists used kalamkari as an expression.The Mughals and the Golconda sultanate were also patrons of this art and it is said that ships carrying loads of canvas with kalamkari prints were sent overseas.
There are two distinctive styles of kalamkari art in India – the Srikalahasti style and the Machilipatnam style. The Srikalahasti style of kalamkari, wherein the “kalam” or pen is used for free hand drawing and filling in the colors. It is entirely made by hand. This style flowered around temples and the patronage of priests, kings and so it had an almost religious identity – scrolls, temple prints, depicted deities and scenes taken from the Hindu epics – Ramayana, Mahabarata, Puranas and the mythological classics were made eloquently. The other is, Machilipatnam, which uses block prints and the printing of sarees is done .Kalamkari art has been practiced by many families in Kalahasti, Andhra Pradesh and for most generations it has become their means of livelihood. Kalamkari had a certain decline, but then it was revived in India and abroad for its craftsmanship. Since the 18th century the British liked the decorative fabric for clothing.
Shatika has amazing kalamkari silk sarees and you can see the difference between the hand painted sarees colours and the printed ones. It’s difficult to say that which saree is better and we should also not do so but one thing is granted that the painted or printed saree they are a sight for sore eyes We would like to see beauty in all forms is so well ingrained in us that we love to appreciate. We appreciate the deft hands of the skilled artists, who have learned in the simplest manner that is, by copying. And who says copying is bad!! How else will we ever learn anything! The will to learn, is what is needed. Do visit our site and see for yourself, the beauties that await your discerning eye.