Mata ni Pachedi


From devotional offering to art, Mata-ni-Pachedi has continued to take new forms. We outline a brief history of this textile tradition and a community that has practiced and perfected it over centuries. READ MORE Colour speak Traditional Mata-ni-Pachedi paintings only featured three colours, each symbolising an aspect of divinity. Tap on the moving hotspots in… Read more »

Traditional Indian art: Show and tell session

On 2nd December 2023, we invited visitors curious about Indian traditional art to our archive. In a show-and-tell session, we introduced them to some ancient storytelling artforms, from the Sarmaya collection. For this session, we explored Mithila, Pattachitra, Mata-ni-Pachedi and Tholu Bommalaata. Some of the prominent works that we presented belonged to renowned artists like… Read more »

Gujarat, land of surprises

Like the beloved Gujarati breakfast of jalebi-fafda, the contrasting flavours of this region give its cultures an irresistible piquancy. Here are some surprising facts to pique your curiosity about Gujarat

Miracle cure – Goddesses of health

The devis, matas, ammas and other female divinities who have been called upon, time and time again, to save humanity from disease, death and its own hubris

Mata Ni Pachedi, Vahanvati Mata

Goddess Vahanvati is also known as Sikotar Mata. The Goddess is closely associated with the sea, commerce, and traders. She is revered by seafarers and is frequently depicted sitting on a boat with outstretched sails. In this Pachedi, the six-armed Goddess is illustrated on a boat-like structure. Worshippers and deities from the Hindu epics decorate… Read more »

Sea of Stories

In the 32nd issue of Spotlight, we explore how the basic human instinct to stay close to water has shaped Indian culture, art and history

River of Faith

Through the veins of a centuries-old textile art tradition flow the waters of a once-mighty river. Follow the journey of a Mata-ni-Pachedi painting as it takes birth on the banks of the Sabarmati

Meladi Mata no Chandarvo

This textile celebrates and reveres the folk goddess Meladi Mata, depicted at the centre seated on a black goat. According to legend, Goddess Parvati created Meladi from the dirt on her body and bestowed her divine shakti or strength and a black male goat as her mount.  Mata-ni-Pachedi or Chandarvo is a textile painting that… Read more »

reimagine I

‘reimagine’ is an ongoing Instagram-exclusive series through which we make connections across the Sarmaya collection and examine the extent to which our ways of seeing — and an object’s own meaning — are informed by time, space, and context

Patang Mata ni Pachedi

This work illustrates the entire process of making the Mata ni Pachedi and the city of Ahmedabad by young artist Sumit Chitara (b.2004), son of National award winner Sanjay Chitara (b.1978).   Mata-ni-pachedi is an artistic tradition practised by the Vaghris of Gujarat. It was a drought that brought the community to Khanpur in Ahmedabad… Read more »

Mata Ni Pachedi, Bahuchara Mata

This Mata-ni-Pachedi  venerates the Bahuchara Mata, depicted sitting on a rooster. Two diminutive goddesses flank her on either side. Benevolent protector of India’s hijra community, the Bahuchara Mata or Becharaji is most commonly portrayed seated on a rooster. The bird represents virility and devotees of the goddess seek help with infertility, among other maladies. Historically,… Read more »

Mata Ni Pachedi, Hadkai Mata

This Mata-ni-Pachedi celebrates and venerates the Hadkai Mata, depicted standing on a large chariot shrine pulled by four dogs. Goddess Hadkai, also known as Hadkamai, Hadaksha, Hadkabai and Hulan, is the Goddess who protects against rabies. Rabies is a real and present danger due to the large population of dogs that live in and around… Read more »


A session on Mata-ni-Pachedi and Mithila arranged exclusively for an organisation that aims to bring Indian art into mainstream education

Mata Ni Pachedi, Durga Mata, Vahanvati Mata, Bahuchara Mata

There are three central goddesses in this painting: Durga, Bahuchara Mata and Vahanvati Mata. If you’ve read this story on goddesses and their vahans, you will know that Durga Mata is the one riding the lion on land, Vahanvati Mata is riding a black goat on a boat in the sea and Bahuchara Mata is… Read more »

Mata Ni Pachedi, Vishat Mata

Vishat Mata’s name is derived from the Gujarati ‘vis-hath’ or twenty hands. Interestingly, even though she’s named for that very quality, this goddess is rarely represented in paintings with twenty arms; some six-armed goddesses have also been identified as Vishat Mata. Her mount is a black buffalo. The Goddess usually carries swords, a dagger, a… Read more »

Mata Ni Pachedi, Bahuchara Mata

Bahuchara Mata is the central figure of this work. The goddess is depicted sitting on a rooster inside a shrine-like structure. Her is flanked by the images of Hindu gods and devotees, and foliage on the outside. This goddess’s name is derived from the Gujarati words ‘bahu’, meaning many and ‘chara’, meaning movement. Her mount… Read more »