Lord of Dance-“Natesha” (Nata- dance, Isha-god) throws his hand in the air as
Bhavani, the Universal mother Parvati beats the dafali (an Indian musical
instrument). Abundant in meaning and oozing delight, this watercolor painting by Kailash Raj, created in the Kangara idiom is an ode to the coming together
of Purusha (supreme male) and Prakriti (supreme female), a union that creates the
three realms and enchants their inhabitants.
Encircled by a crimson red, the Kangara painting of a dancing
Shiva with Parvati is set in an otherworldly plain, with simple strokes of
blue, white, and red along with a pale yellow creating a backdrop against which
this mesmeric Lila (divine play) of Bhava-Bhavani is envisioned. Contrary to
the lush green backgrounds of traditional Kangara paintings, the artist has
chosen a simple background to keep the focus on the theme which is so
beautifully portrayed through his art.
Maa Parvati in the painting stands to the left of the viewer,
clad in regal attire, characteristic of the female subjects of Kangara art. The
fine red scarf with a golden border magnificently folds around her moon-like
face, attracting our eyes to the riveting features of Tripurasundari- the most
beautiful female in the three realms. Her ornaments are of pure gold,
gemstones, and pearls, perfectly suiting her queenly ensemble. Parvati’s henna-painted palms are holding the
dafali and her lotus eyes are gazing at her beloved Shiva, immersed in the
performance of the blissful dance- Laasya.
With his arms in the air, one leg raised, his splendid robe
of leopard skin swinging to his right and the tail of the animal going to the
left, Shiva is the very picture of an enthralling dynamism in this
watercolor. “Tripunda”- the auspicious
mark of three parallel lines adorns the smoky blue-hued physique of Shiva along
with ornaments made of gold and a garland of bones, in which the skulls appear
to be white beads with bizarre-looking facial features on them. Dancing
vigorously, Shiva has his eyes fixed on the source of his movement, his Shakti-
Parvati, on whose musical cues the Lord of three realms, “Tripuresha” performs.
An episode from the Devi Mahatmya tells us of goddess
Parvati’s wish to see Shiva dance. However, when Shiva refuses to indulge her,
Parvati with her instrument (a lute as per the legend), produces such riveting
tunes, that the entire Srishti (creation) began dancing. Entranced by the music,
even Shiva’s serpents left his body and started moving in ecstasy. It was then,
that Shiva could not control himself and thus He danced! This conjugal
pleasure- of requests made and fulfilled is a running theme in the stories of
Shiva and Parvati, the divine duo which represents the perfection of
togetherness. The warmth between the Uma-Maheshwar is conveyed in this
watercolor through the eternal gaze exchanged between them- Parvati with her
head up and Shiva with his tilted neck, fusing in each other through the
passage of eyes.
The chance of immersing oneself in the nectar of Shiva and
Parvati’s inseparability is in itself a gift from the divine. Through this
spellbinding watercolor by Kailash Raj, experience the bliss of Laasya and let
your soul dance, just as the flowers in the foreground do.
Send as free online greeting card
Email a Friend