In Nirmal town, Adilabad district of Andhra Pradesh, there is a concentration
of craftsmen known as Nakash, whose traditional art is painting scenes
from the Hindu epics Mahabharata and Ramayana.
These craftsmen use indigenous colours made from minerals, gum and herbs.
The now familiar gold in Nirmal work is got from herbal Juices. Over the
years, Nirmal work has grown to meet new needs. Moving away from being
mere painters of epics, the craftsmen today paint motifs in the style of the
old Indian schools. Moghul miniatures are reproduced beautifully
on soft white wood. This white wood called Ponniki is strengthened with
coatings of tamarind seed paste, fine muslin and pipeclay, before being