The Santhal Tribe Art: A Celebration of Life



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Are you looking for Indian Tribal Art then check out this post to know more. Santhal Tribe is the 3rd largest tribe in India. Origins of this people are Pre-Aryan Period around 3500 – 4000 year ago. The native of this tribe people is mainly states of West Bengal, Odisha, Bihar, Jharkhand and Assam. They worship Marang Buru / Bonga as a High Holiness.

The Santhal Tribe Art

These people are very brave and courageous who served in the British Army. They have very unique skills in making musical instruments, mats, and basket. They have a unique distinctive culture of their own too. They love and enjoy their traditional dance and music very much. They have also skill in making of Paintings like magic in colours.

Indian Tribal Art

at work
Indian Tribal Art

Santhal Art and Music

Santhal folk Paintings are the historic art of India. This Art is not done only for the profession but also Art is for enjoying and celebration. The main themes of this art are basically weddings, dancing, family life, rituals, harvest, music, nature, daily activities and creatures.

The Santhals paint is done on Pata or cloth. Santhals earlier used natural colours that were ready from numerous leaves and flowers.

But currently, they need to start painting with artificial paints on paper in tiny and medium-size scrolls created by sewing sheets of paper along.

Though we tend to loosely refer these paintings as Santhal social group painting or people painting of geographical area, their designs vary in type and application of colour from region to region. Bankura, Midnapore or Kalighat have very different styles. Even the themes distinctly differ.

Traditional Dance
Indian Tribal Art

Santhal Dance and Festivals

Santhal music and dance are one of the best tribe art in India, which create immense vibrancy and cheerfulness in our body. Santhal music differs from Hindustani classical music in many ways. Also, they play and enjoy music using Tirio ( Bamboo Flute with the seven holes ), an open chest ( korom ), a short neck( hotok ), Phet banam ( a fretless stringed instrument with three or four strings ), Junko and Singa that evokes the traditional feelings. The Santhal People accompany dances with two drums; The Tamak and The Tumdak.

This art is performed during fairs, festivals and traditional rituals. They relax with light music and dance after a long day hard work. Both men and women perform in the festival. Women dress in red-bordered sari and Men dress in Dhoti, tree leaves and flowers during the dance. They play the beats of music, to celebrate the glory of nature, raise a message and proposal of quality prayers to the high holiness of their tribe through a dance.


Santhal Culture and Traditions

Santhal Tribe enjoys and loves culture which can be seen and felt. The festival is celebrated during springtime and also the month of October. This tribal art show the world about rich tribal culture of India.


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