Kolkata-based visual artist Somneel Saha has used the medium of back-light concept to highlight his art work at the massive Cooperative Society Puja Committee in K Block of Chittaranjan Park in south Delhi, also known as mini Bengal, which has over a dozen Durga Puja pandals in its neighbourhood.
He has used the theme "Chandi" to showcase Goddess Durga in the form of a contemporary woman.
"We have always seen Maa Durga through our earliest epic stories in which she is wearing too many ornaments and is heavily decked up. I have tried to contemporize her through this tale where I have portrayed the woman of today as Durga, and how important it is for all of us to understand and respect the power of woman," Saha told IANS.
"These paintings show her transformation as a Chandi and how gods helped to create her and armed her with weapons," he added.
Saha has used primary colours: red, yellow and green for the paintings on the panel.
"The choice of colours is very important when you want light to pass through the paintings. If light passes through any other colour than it will be black. Hence, I had to stick to only these three colours for my paintings. Once the lights are
lit, the colour combination makes the ambience colourful," he added.
There are around 400 puja samitis in Delhi.
A little away from the Cooperative Ground puja is Durgotsab in Greater Kailash II. Its marquee stands out for its grandeur.
Semi-circular tall white pillars form the entrance to the pandal, replicating a mix of Mughal and colonial architecture.
Explaining the choice of the marquee design, samiti vice president Samrat Banerjee told IANS: "The fusion of design has been influenced by two things -- the Mughal architecture comes from the times of Raja Krishnachandra, who was extremely influenced by Mughal architecture, and the British influences comes from the 'babu' era from the colonial times."
"So it is a fusion of our traditional history, that is rich and had two regional influences during its making," added Banerjee.
B Block Puja Samiti in Chittaranjan Park has chosen Rajasthan as their theme and are celebrating the vibrant puppetry culture of the state. The walls of the pandal are adorned with puppets of colourful dancing Rajasthani women. Stuffed camels at the entrance and masks of various sizes and shapes on the ceiling of the marquee make it stand out.
Sticking to the rules of promoting eco-friendly ways of Puja, organisers of the Mela Ground committee in C. R. Park have used small cane baskets to decorate the ceiling and walls of the pandal.
Forming a circular pattern, these baskets of different sizes and shapes are placed in such a way that they look like a flower if seen from a distance.
The Kalibari temple of Chittaranjan Park, one of the oldest, has kept to traditional themes for its pandal.
"This being a temple, we steadfastly stay away from the glitzy, loud festivities. Devotion and faith in the Mother is at the centre of all that we do here," said Pradip Majumdar, vice-president of the Kalibari Puja Committee.
"We stay away from Bollywood songs. We play traditional music and 'Agomoni gaan' (in worship of the Mother Goddess) to get into the festive mode and stay connected with our roots," he added.
According to Hindu mythology, Goddess Durga, accompanied by her four children descends to the earth each year to visit her 'parents home' to slay the demon Mahisasura, the epitome of evil, and her victory is celebrated as an ode to Durga in the form of Durga Puja. The four-day celebrations end with the immersion of the idols in the rivers and water bodies.
--IANS (Posted on 10-10-2013)