To understand the Aipan art better, it is very important to know the significance of ‘Dots’ in the Aipan designs.  A ‘dot’ signifies completeness and life.  According to natural science, a dot is like the seed through which the world has originated.  Mathematical science also has a special emphasis on the dots. While meditating too, the axis of concentration is none other than a point or ‘dot’.  It is thus that a dot is included as an important part of the Aipan art.

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In the region of Kumaon, various Aipan designs with dots are adorned on the floor and the walls. While making the Aipan designs, it is especially checked that that every line or a group of lines in the design end with a dot.  An Aipan without dots is considered inauspicious. On the death of a person, the Aipan is drawn without dots. This is indicative of a bad day for the family.  After the death ceremony is over, Aipan designs are again made with dots, which signify good luck.

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Lines also have a special significance. They signify continuity. Odd number of lines is used in Aipan designs.  It is believed that even numbers are complete in themselves but odd numbers are incomplete and seem open-ended. It is suggestive of the wonderful message of continuity and eternity.

Aipan as an art form has much more to it than just a piece of beautiful artwork that pleases the eye. If we go deep into the significance of each element in the art form, a wonderful message to unfold.

Written by Asmita Jagwani

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