Lord Ganesha is the Hindu god of new beginnings. This springs from him also being the remover of obstacles, leading his followers to pray to him before making major life decisions. Many rites and ceremonies also invoke him at the beginning of the worship. Lord Ganesha is also a patron of the arts and wisdom. His elephant head makes him one of the most recognizable gods in the Hindu tradition and even outside of India.Lord Ganesha Dancing and Stretching a Snake Over His Head is a watercolor painting on Patti made by artist Pravakar Das. This is a prime example of folk art from the Temple Town Puri (in Orissa). It depicts Lord Ganesha in his most iconic form featuring an elephant head and a rounded belly. He also has only one tusk and is drawn with eight hands while his trunk is trained on a sweet on one of his hands. The mouse is also present near his feat, symbolizing his power to overcome big and small obstacles. The serpent is also another animal that is usually present in depictions of Ganesha. Stories say that Ganesha wrapped a serpent on his belly to keep the sweets from spilling over after the mouse which carries him stumbles and made him fall. This imagery is often included in various depictions of Ganesha and the snake, either as a belt or held above his head by his hands.The color palette used includes midnight blue, white, and pale yellow which can also symbolize Ganesha’s serpent story with the darkness of the night when the moon was shot by Lord Ganesha after the cosmic being laughed at him from tripping and spilling the content of his stomach. The moon, the mouse, the serpent, and Ganesha's belly remains a powerful and candid representation of how the cosmos (his stomach) is tied together by the serpent energy (kundalini) that holds everything together.
Water Color Painting on Patti
Folk Art From The Temple Town Puri (Orissa)
Artist: Pravakar Das
19.5 inch x 25.5 inch - Frame
12 inch x 18 inch - Painting
Patachitra of Orissa
Patachitra or the icon paintings of Orissa occupy an important status among the many art forms centered around the temple of Puri. For the painted surface, the chitrakar community of painters utilises a gauze like fine cotton cloth, coated with a cooked solution of powdered tamarind seed, chalk and gum and subsequently smoothened.
The paintings are executed primarily in profile with highly elongated eyes within a floral border. There are few landscapes and the scenes are depicted in a foreground closely juxtaposed together.
Highly stylized paintings of the Puri temple and scenes from the epics, Ramayana and Mahabharata, figure along with the predominant painting of Lord Jagannath, a form of Krishna, with his older brother Balarama and sister Subhadra.