October 11, 2021


Smita Aloni

Smita Aloni

I am an entrepreneurial artist based in Dubai, UAE. My passion of art stems from my personal journey and relationship with Phad Painting – a traditional Indian art – which has grown alongside my passion to teach art and pass on my understanding of visualising ideas in 2D and 3D

My relationship with teaching art has been growing for thirteen years and my students have grown with me.


History Of PHAD:  Phad, which is a long narrative cloth painting depicts the events of the epic of King Pabuji. lt was developed around 1500 A.D. in India. This is an oral epic in the local language, which is still performed to the present day in North India. The rulers of North India were hereditary kings called Rajputs. Their success stories and fairy tales were already scripted by various poets under royal patrons. But due to the strict caste system which prevailed then, people from the lower castes were not allowed to sing or listen to this poetic text. As a king, Pabuji has helped various villagers to own their land and to have a better livelihood. So to praise the king’s efforts this oral epic tale was started by the people who did not have the privilege to attend the royal court. The most striking feature of the cult of Pabuji is its principal ritual. Singer priests perform a .liturgical epic telling of the life, death and avenging of their hero-god.

The word ‘Phad’ comes from the word ‘Par’ which means scroll in the local language. The original Phad Painting is a cloth painting about fifteen feet in length and between four to five feet high. The storyteller scrolls the cloth out depicting various scenes in front of the audience.

As the colors used are derived from natural stone, the painting can last for many years. In today’s world, these paintings are still appealing due to its striking natural colors and peculiar shape and figures which remind us of the bygone era of this Indian art form.

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