Monday, October 6, 2014



 Deities with 'different' look  @ Behala Club @ Banamali Naskar Road.
(Acknowledgement  - Website of Behala Club  * )

Both these Puja organisers have used human figures - plenty of them - to adorn their Puja pandals.  The similarity ends here. BC  has   brought in two 'Saura' artists from Odisha   and  Installation art - an ambiance which looked magnificent when lighted up in the night. The installation looked good even during daylight. Very colourful , very arty.  Tribals' life - hunting ,cultivation, domestic scenes and festivity - with abstract designs -  enliven the ambiance. The deities have been given very distinctive look. Almost human faces, little or no ornaments. A remarkable effort by BC and Rupak Bose.

The entrance of Behala Club.
 The central piece is placed in such a way 
that neither its details nor the 'Garbhagriha' is not visible.

Huge display of 'Saura' Art.
(Acknowledgement  - Website of Behala Club )

View of the same, under soft light of the rising sun.

For a few minutes,the morning sun allows the Dancers  an opportunity 
to dance  with their shadows !

Scenes  of Hunting

(*) I would like to mention to  Behala Club's Puja Committee that they could have kept the 'Garbhagriha' better illuminated during daytime as well - few details could be viewed during daytime.

The 'Torana' @ the entrance of Abasar Sarbajanin. 
It has guards with spears on the top rung, musicians on the  lower rung.
The competitors , with their instruments, line up the side walls.

Musicians traveling on carts pulled by strange-looking animals.
 The whole of right-wall has musicians - mostly drummers & flutists -
lined up to entertain and/or compete.

While Behala Club used mostly paintings  of figures to  decorate the 'Installation', Abasar Sarbajanin deployed human figures created from junk to decorate theirs. It is an arena where people were sitting on top of a huge mound to enjoy competition between two groups of musicians, standing and siting along the left and right walls. The 'torana' had musicians too along with armed guards, with their spears high up.  People were coming in strange carts, pulled by stranger animals. The cacophony  disrupted peace and birds were flying away. The cart pullers were also made of junk while birds are were made of ceiling fans and hoses.

Viewers' Gallery atop the 'Garbhagriha'.
Birds irritated by cacophony fly away !

Well, to other viewers, the interpretation of the 'Installation' may be another  'story' , but, it was  not  a  3-minutes enter-click-with-mobile-depart 'Installation'

 Duga by Gouranga Kuila - awarded 'Sharad Samman'

The deity, made with jute, was a piece of art. The 'Garbha-griha' is decorated with hanging red threads, small artifacts connected with  Hindu rituals. Very simple, very tasteful.

 Decoration of interior of  'Garbhagriha'.

Very special faces. Very special background,
made of weaving red & yellow threads.

Not much well-publicised, these two pandals stole my heart.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

DURGA PUJA 2014 (Part II)

Reporting my experience of mornings of Panchami & Shashthi

Ballygunge Cultural Club

This year, Ruby and I have decided to  target pandals/pavilions which we would surely enjoy - not go by popularity. From TV reports of last three evenings, I felt if some organisers and Installation artists have overdone decoration and paid less attention on  the imagery of Durga. Revelers continue to crowd the famous Puja pandals and very little is written criticising work  of indifferent merit. I shall not go into the details of some well-known, yet  not-good-enough work at this point of time - rather share some of the photos we have shot.
 'Samajsebi' Pandal - shaped like a piano.

 'Samajsebi' has done a great thing by dedicating their show to RD Burman. Huge replicas of musical instruments RD loved to use in his music. The main pavilion is a piano-like structure. The deities' eyes are very special . The specialty will stay with you. My pleasant experience was marred by rude behaviour of one volunteer. In the past also, I have seen young men behave extremely badly with viewers, showing off the 5-days power they acquire !

Adornement  outside.

   The imagery is great, the pillars are two irritants for photographers.

 Adjacent Puja pandal od Ballygunge Cultural Club has been a great crowd puller through decades.  Traditional deities BCC display, with thoughtful decorations. This year, they have used colourful lamps and fabricated   steel structure of abstract design for adornment.of their pandal. Different from whatever we are seeing in TV.

 Lovely lighting  @ BCC !

Traditional imagery - framed within fabricated steel structure.

 Purbapally - the club in our earlier residence @ Jamir Lane - used to offer good work within shoe-string budget. This year, we found their work mediocre.  Nevertheless , the decoration

 Excellent 'shola' work @ Purbapally !