Bihar, a state in Eastern Indian, has a rich cultural heritage and the folk art of Madhubani Painting makes it all the more prominent. Practiced by the modest women folk of the Mithila region in Northern Bihar, this school of painting is particularly famous for its use of bold natural colors and intricate linear designs.
This exclusive handmade Madhubani painting represents the mythical figure of Shiva in His ‘Ardhanareshwar’ avatar (incarnation). As ‘Ardhanareshwar’, Shiva is an epitome of duality. According to Indian Mythology, Shiva (the creator of the universes) merged himself with Parvati (the sustaining energy) in an eternal, inseparable bond. The two figures merged as one is known as ‘Ardhanareshwar’ or ‘Half-man-half woman’. Shiva’s blue tinged body is merged with Parvati’s yellow one. Bright natural colors have been used to add to the environment of conjugality and harmony. Enlarged eyes of the deity signify divine vision and the floral motifs combine divinity and nature together. The icon of ‘Ardhanareshwar’ symbolizes the union of ‘Purush’ (power) and ‘Prakriti’ (nature/creation), of masculine and feminine energies. The ‘Ardhanareshwar’ figure is believed to confer family harmony, conjugal love and unison.