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Last Updated: Wednesday, 2 June, 2004, 12:18 GMT 13:18 UK
In pictures: India's dying art
Mural painter in Orissa, eastern India
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Mural painting is one of India's ancient folk arts but, as the BBC's Ayanjit Sen found on a trip to the eastern state of Orissa, in some parts it is dying out from a lack of patrons. Pictures by Ayanjit Sen.
Village of Raghurajpur in Orissa state
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The artisans village of Raghurajpur, about 100km from state capital Bhubaneshwar, is typical - its mural artists are moving on to other forms of work as clients for their exquisite art dry up.
Maguni Mahapatra
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Maguni Mahapatra, 45, belongs to a generation of mural painters. He says painting murals can no longer sustain his family of six.
Maguni Mahapatra
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The work is complex. The walls are plastered with lime, sand, molasses and jute. The paints are made from minerals, pigments and plant gum and have no synthetic materials.
Brindaban Swain
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Brindaban Swain is another artist who is suffering but there is one ray of hope. In Raghurajpur, a cultural NGO has paid for murals, turning the village into a kind of living gallery.
Mural in Orissa
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The director of the project, Anupam Shah, says he hopes it will help to revive mural art. The NGO has asked the government to take similar steps in the state.
Mural in Orissa
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The project is fighting to save one of India's oldest classical painting forms. The techniques are traditional and the themes are varied - usually narrating religious and mythological stories.


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