The term Sanjhi is derived from the Hindi word sandhya, the period of dusk with which the art form is typically associated. The art depicts Indian mythological stories in numerous forms, with predominant focus on Krishna's Leela. Known for its inherent spiritual implications that reach beyond immediate aesthetic appeal, Sanjhi art is considered to be one of the finest arts of spiritual expression. Sanjhi art is the traditional art of stencil cutting from Mathura, the land of Krishna. The art grew in the 16th and 17th centuries, when the walls and floors of temples were decorated with Sanjhi motifs.
As per the folklore the origin of this art started by Radha, who made Sanjhi rangolis using natural colors, along with flowers, leaves and colored stones, to woo Krishna. The Gopis soon followed suit, also making intricate designs to impress Krishna.
The festival of Sanjhi coincides with the shraddha ritual performed in honour of dead relatives, performed in the Hindu month of Ashwin (September) during the dark fortnight marked as pitri-paksha.