Sambalpuri Ikat: Patterns & Motifs

in Image Gallery
Published on: 06 November 2017

Ipsita Sahu

Ipsita Sahu is pursuing a PhD in Cinema Studies from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. She has worked on film exhibition and single screen theatres, and is currently looking at the black-and-white television era in India. As someone born and brought up in Odisha, Sahu's interest in Odisha's rich tradition of crafts and textiles has led her to work with the well-known master weaver Surender Meher on this project on the Sambalpuri ikat.

The designing of a Sambalpuri textile is an important initial stage of its production. Certain motifs and patterns that have come down the ages—e.g., flowers, animals, birds, leaves, creepers, and symbols attached to our mythology like the kalasha (ritual vessel) or purna kumbha (brimming vessel, whose symbolism in the visual arts is discussed in Bäumer 1992:444–47)—form a significant part of this textile tradition. The art of using existing motifs and patterns to come up with a unique piece each time is  very fascinating. Explore some of the patterns and motifs in the visual gallery below.



Bäumer, Bettina, ed. 1992. Kalatattvakosa: A Lexicon of Fundamental Concepts of the Indian Arts, vol. 2. New Delhi: Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts.