Hidden Erotic Palm Leaf Etching, Odisha
A Tala Pattachitra etched painting from Odisha with hinged circles that unfold to reveal other images.
The central panel depicts the elephant headed god Ganesh.
All the drawings are created using a fine etching tool and black ink traditionally made from lamp black.
Ten pieces of palm leaf are stitched together to make the whole image that can be folded up to conceal and protect the paintings. The painted image contains nine circular panels each of which can be folded out in two directions so that each circle in fact contains three images.
Portraits of people and mythical figures are the first to be seen. Unfold the panels in one direction to reveal paintings of birds and animals. Unfold the panels in the direction to reveal erotic paintings of couples making love.
Etching on palm leaf has a long tradition in Odisha (previously known as Orissa) on the eastern side of India. In fact recording script and images on palm leaf probably predates the use of paper.
Dimensions: 33x33cm Complete with hanging cord.