The villagers of Banni build circular houses of mud, roofed with thatch – materials eminently suited to their hostile desert environment. The clustering of huts and the arrangement of open spaces reflect their life-styles and social structure. Faintly discernible – in many many different ways, from painted wall decorations to jewellery designs – is an underpinning of other aspirations, intimations of deeper and more primordial myths and images. For like thousands of other Indian villages, Banni represents both time present as well as time past.

: Cluster of huts shows walls painted with elemental shapes in muted earth colours. These bhungas, three to five metres in diameter, form the main living space, and the rectangular choki is used for cooking, etc. Bhungas work well in the desert’s climate