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April 2006

Pithoro called Babo Pithoro by the tribals is one of the many deities worshipped in the region and this Pithora style of folk painting is a way of appeasing the Gods and not a decorative wall piece.

The walls of the houses are painted by professional artists belonging to the Rathawa caste. The owner of the house prays for deliverance from evil and bad times (be it illness, lack of rains, low harvest yields) with the promise of getting a pithora painted.

Since the painting is done only by professionals, it is an expensive affair and the owner gets it done when it suits him. If a pithora painting is already done on a wall, it is redone.

The main wall in the house is prepared, along with the adjacent walls. The surface is coated with a plaster of clay & cow dung, by the young unmarried girls. The actual painting is done on a Wednesday. The rituals start a day earlier. On the Tuesday, the walls are whitewashed. The white dry clay is brought in five new baskets covered with five pieces of new cloth.