Manjushas are an Indian art form. They are temple-shaped boxes comprising eight pillars. They are made of bamboo, jute and paper. They also contains paintings of Hindu gods and goddesses and other characters. These boxes are used in Bishahari puja, a festival dedicated to the Snake God that is celebrated in Bhagalpur and nearby regions, India.
According to legend, Manjusha art or Angika art originated in Anga Pradesh (Present Day Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal) which was used in Bihula-Vishahri Pooja, celebrated usually in August to please snake gods (Nag).
Legends says that five daughters of Lord Shiva, Maina, Bhawani, Devi, Padma and Jaya known as Bishahari (meaning "person carrying poison") requested to worship earth. There request was granted by Shiva in the form of the Bishahari festival.
Manjusha Art is and ancient and historically significant art form, considered on a par with Madhubani art. Manjusha Art or Manjusha Kala is often referred to as Snake Paintings by foreigners as swirling snakes in the art depict the central character Bihula’s tale of love and sacrifice.
- Kossak , Steven (1997). Indian court painting, 16th-19th century.. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art. ISBN 0870997831. (see index: p. 148-152)
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