Art and Culture of Kerala

Kerala Art and Culture

KalarippayattuArt and culture have always been integral to Kerala. The pluralist aspect reflected in the art forms of the State is rooted in the rituals of its indigenous people. Among the dance forms that have evolved from ancient customs, the most prominent are surely the theyyam of northern Kerala and the padayani of south-central Kerala. Although koodiyattam and Kathakali are classical forms once favoured by the elite, they now represent quintessential dance forms of the region. An interesting feature of the dances of Kerala, excluding the folk forms, is the strong influence of kalarippayattu, a physical discipline that was followed irrespective of gender.

Kerala Celebrations

PulikaliKerala is also a land with a variety of celebrations that transcend regional and religious boundaries. What stands out is the thread of harmony that runs through the different ceremonies and rituals. The most spectacular event of all, Onam, epitomises a new found vigour and optimism about life. The festival celebrates the return of King Mahabali, who is believed to visit his subjects every year. To convince their beloved king that Kerala is still the land of milk and honey, people decorate their homes and celebrate to the fullest, sometimes even faking prosperity, to present a happy facade for their king.

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