The Contemporary Madhubani Art of Dr. Rani Jha

For thousands of years women have faced oppression and subjugation. And some of them started to
express their feelings and create scenarios that showcased the freedom they longed for in different
forms – be it music or art. Whenever they could take out some time for themselves.

This is the story of that rare artist who has used her artistic talent to re-invent a traditional folk art
form into a contemporary  ‘avatar’.

As a child – Rani Jha lived in a community where women and their feelings and opinions were never
taken seriously. That was not acceptable to her and inspired by the paintings of her grandmother
and mother – she started expressing her dissent in her art.

“I wanted to start a revolution,” she says.

And so a young Rani fought with her parents to complete her matriculation and found work as a
painter in an NGO that supported abandoned and abused women. As she listened to the stories of
their pain – she started painting their life stories on the walls of the shelter home where they lived.
And that is how her Madhubani paintings began to take on a contemporary theme and form.

The Change

While she has been painting since the past 35 years, Padma Shri awardee Dr. Rani Jha now teaches
Madhubani painting at the Mithila Art Institute to deserving students free of charge. She also
believes in Goddess Jagdamba Devi’s inspiration that has enabled her to tell the stories of
women on topics as varied as their fears, female friendships, wives of migrant husbands, selective
female abortions and more.

Woman With Responsibilities

Today – Dr. Rani Jha shines with her art and creative expression to make a difference to the
world and to the cause of women and we at WorldArtCommunity are deeply honoured and
privileged to have such a brave, renowned and inspiring woman artist showcasing her art, her
point of view to the world on our platform.

To check out her interpretation of an age-old art form in a modern and thought provoking
avatar – explore the work of Dr Rani Jha here

Leave a Reply