Kerala stands next to Rajasthan in having the largest collection of murals based on puranic(ancient Indian mythology) themes. The murals of Kerala bear the stamp of uniqueness in aesthetic composition and techniques. Most of these were painted between 15th and 19th centuries, many even date back to the 8th century AD.
The temples and palaces of Kerala are invariable sagas of Hindu Gods and Goddesses and visual poems of their heroic deeds. It took a lot of dedication and devotion to create these visual wonders. The pigments, gum, brushes etc. are all taken from plants or natural minerals. Frequently used pigments in Kerala are saffron-red, saffron-yellow, green, red, white, blue, black, yellow and golden-yellow.
If you are a serious student of this art, here are a few destinations which you should not miss while in Kerala.
The oldest murals of Kerala are found in the Thirunandikkara Cave temple now a part of Kanyakumari district of the neighbouring state of Tamilnadu.
The largest mural panel in Kerala – the Gajendra Moksha – is at Krishnapuram Palace near Kayamkulam in Alappuzha district. Extensive murals depicting scenes from the Hindu epics, the Ramayana and the Bhagavatha are preserved at the Mattancherry Palace, Ernakulam district. The murals of the Shiva Temple in Ettumanoor provide insight into the earliest forms of Dravidian mural art.
Mural paintings are available at Culture Shoppe’s outlet at Mascot Hotel, Thiruvananthapuram – 695 033, Kerala. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Culture Shoppe is the official agency of the Department of Tourism, Government of Kerala to promote Kerala Souvenirs.