Durga In Vibrant Colours

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$1570

A vibrantly coloured chhavi (image) of Devi Mahishasuramardini, slayeress (‘mardini’) of the buffalo-demon (‘mahisha-asura’). On the back of Her leonine vahana (mount) She stands on one foot, the other in the hand of the vanquished asura. This is the most striking detail about this depiction of Durga, which is in keeping with the way She is annually worshipped in the Eastern delta region.


From the scarlet of Her saree to the sharp angles of Her high, bejewelled crown of gold, this is how the wife of Shiva pays Her sharadiya (autumnal) visit to ihaloka. She is accompanied (clockwise from Her immediate right) by Lakshmi, Sarasvati, Karttika, and Ganesha, who are revered to be Her children.


The vibrant colour scheme of this Durga oil painting on canvas makes this a must-buy. The iconography is on point, the masterstroke being the sheer determination on Her beauteous face. An oil painting such as this one would be a tasteful addition to the home of any traditional canvas oil painting lover.

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Item Code: OT86
Specifications:
Oil on Canvas
Dimensions 48 inch x 72 inch
Handmade
Handmade
Free delivery
Free delivery
Fully insured
Fully insured
100% Made in India
100% Made in India
Fair trade
Fair trade

This brilliant painting, oil on canvas, as large as four by six feet, rendered in modern art style but with a mythical theme, represents the ten-armed Devi – Goddess, killing the buffalo-demon Mahisha, better known as Mahishasura. The goddess is attended on her right by goddess Lakshmi carrying lotus in her right hand, and a pot of gems, in her left, and on her left, by goddess Saraswati carrying in her right hand a lotus bud, and in her left, her usual ‘vina’ – stringed musical instrument. Though while the gold complexioned Lakshmi is attired in pinkish mauve ‘sari’ and blue complexioned Saraswati, in light green, in their overall adornment – style of crowns, garlands of fresh flowers and other ornaments, the two figures are almost identical.  Two other figures are attending upon the goddess; on extreme right in the lower register is the four-armed Ganesha carrying disc, mace and conch, the attributes of Vishnu, and the elephant goad; on the extreme left is a princely figure with bow and arrow, perhaps Karttikeya rendered in simple human form instead of his six-faced form.


Though a votive icon enshrining a large colourfully structured arch, almost all forms static, the image of the Great Goddess charging at the demon with her trident superbly portrays motion and force with which she overpowers the demon. Unlike a routine representation in any medium – stone, metal, textile, paper or canvas, this painting represents the demon’s anthropomorphic as well as animal forms independent of each other. Most other paintings perceive the demon Mahisha, a term meaning buffalo, as half man-half buffalo, often the human form emerging out of the decapitated figure of the animal. In the painting the demon’s buffalo part has been represented as its head. Though with its eye wide open, it lies motionless on the ground. A bit of the animal’s back and tail are other parts visible in the paining. The Devi’s mount lion seems to walk over it. The demon, in his anthropomorphic form, appears to have been completely baffled and dismayed by the Devi’s sudden attack and has meekly submitted. The weapon he held in the right hand has slipped away, and with the shield held in his left, he has fallen on the ground.


The Mahishasura-Mardini form of the Devi, now popularly known as Durga, that blends sublime force and commitment to a divine cause with the beauty of a feminine form conjoint with exceptional agility and brilliance, prevails over her all forms, votive or aesthetic, in Devi’s iconography. In this painting the goddess has been represented as carrying in her ten hands battle-axe, spear, wheel, arrow, chopper, mace, club, bow, bell and a large snake stretching down to the demon’s figure and holding him in its coil. Notably, out of the Devi’s ten arms just two, one charging with spear and the other releasing the snake, are engaged in killing Mahisha, as if not more than just a grain of her power was required to annihilate him. Alike, the Goddess is engaged in battle with the most mighty demon of the day but her face is not turned to him, or is rather turned into direction other than his, suggesting that the evil’s eradication is just her side-target, the world’s weal, to which her face is turned, being her primary.


Now a popular myth, a buffalo-faced demon by the name of Mahisha once ruled the earth. By his great penance he had won from Brahma the boon of invincibility against all males. This turned him into a highly ambitious and arrogant ruler. After grabbing the entire earth he invaded heaven and defeated Indra and all gods and evicted them of Indraloka – their abode. Gods approached Brahma for rescuing them and learnt from him about Mahisha’s immunity from death at the hands of all males, gods, human or beasts. On Brahma’s revelation that a female alone could kill him, after due deliberations gods decided to create a female power out of their divine attributes as also bestowing on her absolute divine beauty and female graces, such as made her represent also the absolute womanhood on the earth. Thus, the Great Goddess, out of gods’ power and with their attributes was created. Finally, sage Narada disclosed to the newly created Goddess the sad plight of gods and the errand for which she had been created. The Goddess delightfully accepted the prayer of gods and later in a fierce war killed the buffalo demon Mahisha. Anup Gomay, a contemporary artist with rare talent for portraying myths realistically marking the continuity of the great tradition of the modern art style which reached its zenith in the paintings of Raja Ravi Varma, has painted this excellent art piece.


Oil painting technique – India centric

Oil painting is the most interesting technique in art. Unlike other paintings or art forms, oil painting is a process in which colored pigments are painted on the canvas with a drying oil medium as a binder. This medium helps colors blend beautifully to create layers and also makes them appear rich and dense. Several varieties of oil are used in this painting such as sunflower oil, linseed oil, etc., and depending on the quality of the oil, a particular consistency of the paint is developed. With the use of an oil medium, the painting gets a natural sheen on the surface which appears extremely attractive. India is famous for its old tradition of making oil paintings. This art form was brought by Europeans in the 18th century and is now practiced by almost all well-known artists. Nirmal, a small tribal town in the state of Telangana is the center of traditional oil paintings in India where the local people practice it with dedication. Most Indian artists still use the traditional technique of oil painting.

Canvas of the required size is prepared

The artists use either a wood panel or canvas made from linen or cotton. Sometimes the canvas is stretched onto the wooden frame to form a solid base, or cardboard may be used. The canvas is coated with a layer of white paint or chalk mixed with animal glue. This mixture is then smoothed and dried to form a uniform, textured surface. The wooden panel is more expensive and heavier but its solidity is an advantage in making detailed paintings with ease.
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Sketch is drawn on the canvas

Now the artist starts to draw the subject of the painting on the canvas using the actual charcoal or a charcoal pencil. Sometimes, he may sketch with thinned paint as well.
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Oil paint is applied using paint brushes or palette knives

Now that the rough sketch is prepared, the artist is now ready to paint. Oil paint, a special paint that contains particles of pigments suspended in a drying oil (usually linseed oil), is again mixed with oil to make it thinner for applying it on the canvas. Proper consistency of the paint is maintained to avoid its breakage. The most important rule for the application of oil paint is “Fat over lean” in which the first layer of paint is thin and later, thicker layers are applied. This means that each additional layer of paint contains more oil. This results in getting a stable paint film. Traditionally, paint was applied using paint brushes but now the artists also use palette knives to create crisp strokes. To paint using this technique, the edge of the palette knife is used to create textured strokes that appear different from that of a paintbrush. Sometimes, oil paints are blended simply using fingers for getting the desired gradation.
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Smaller oil paintings, with very fine detail, are relatively easier to paint than larger ones. The most attractive feature of these paintings is the natural shiny appearance that is obtained on the surface because of the use of oil paint. The blending of colors looks extremely realistic and this is the reason why oil paintings are loved by everyone throughout the world.
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