Rangoli, called Kolam in Tamil Nadu, is a beautiful form of art. It is floor design or painting drawn by women every day, in the entrance of the house. It is a tradition followed in the south, signifying beauty and a welcoming environment. It also brings prosperity and good luck to the house, where it is made and helps in warding off evil.
Pongal Kolam are of different kinds:
It is nothing but, free hand drawing of lines, to make geometrical pattern.
Pulli or Dot Kolam
This kolam basically consists of dots and lines,arranged in a specific sequential order and then joined together to form a meaningful and beautiful design. A grid or line of dots numbering from 4 to 108 is put and drawn into a beautiful pattern, joining the points with either straight or curved lines, or lines going around the points to make a good design.
Chuzhi or Loop Kolam
This is a type of twisted chains created by linking one loop with the next, thus making wonderful design, within the basic pattern.
A variety of materials like rice powder or paste, marble powder, coloured powders, petals, flowers and the likes are used for making kolam.
Plates and Boxes provided with etched holes, are available in the market. This is filled with kolam or rangoli powder & then, tapped on the ground. There, you have a beautiful kolam. Rollers can also be used. Fill them with rangoli powder and roll it on the floor, to draw basic lines or kolam, using one’s imagination.
The Sankranti Rath, (chariot) is usually drawn during Pongal, the ropes of the rath being kept open till the next day, to be joined from house to house, symbolizing a collective desire, of an uninterrupted cycle of cosmic life. Innovative designs of animals like elephant, birds, as also, Pongal designs with sugarcane and overflowing pots of milk, and complicated geometric patterns with the message ‘Happy Pongal’ are also drawn.