The Spiritual Form of Ancient Art and Culture - Bharatanatyam (Visual Art) Depicted Using Unique Techniques on Scratchboard (Fine Art) Medium


  • Arpitha Parthasarathy



Bharatanatyam, Devotion, Fine Art, Scratchboard, Tattoo Needles, X-Acto 11.


The most ancient form of dance that is prevailing todays is a form of classical Indian dance, Bharatanatyam. In Sanskrit (and Devanagri), bharatanatyam means "Indian dance", is believed to have divine origin and is of the most ancient form of classical dance. Bharatanatyam is a two thousand-year-old dance form, originally practiced in the temples of ancient India. The art today remains purely devotional even today and this performing art is yet to gain awareness and interest in the western world. This dance form has various implications in improving the higher order thinking in children and provides health benefits in adults apart from cultural preservation. The current study uses scratchboard as a medium to display the artistic movements and emotions. Scratchboard, a fine art is one means by which the visual art is expressed in this current study using sharp tools, namely X-acto 11 scalpel and tattoo needles. This unique medium made up of a masonite hardboard coated with soft clay and Indian ink has been used to not only show the details of the ancient dance form and expression but also to comprehend and transcribe both visual art and fine art. It is for the first time that scratchboard medium has been the innovatively used to show various textures of flower, glistening gold jewels, hand woven silk and the divine expression in the same art ‘devotion’. The current study was carried out in-order to perpetuate, conserve and disseminate these classic forms of visual art and fine art.

Author Biography

Arpitha Parthasarathy

Biography: Arpitha Parthasarathy, PhD is a trained artist, jewellery designer, hand embroidery, fabric painting, yoga teacher and a Biomedical Scientist. Dr. Parthasarathy, is a resident of Maryland and uses her extensive creative abilities and skills to continue her passion for Fine Art. Her passion for nature and aesthetics and portraits has been of current interests through scratchboard. She is an advocate for endangered wildlife/conservation and uses scratchboard as a medium to bring about awareness.


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