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Lord Ganesha Engaged in Dance

Lord Ganesha Engaged in Dance
Availability: Can be backordered
South Indian Temple Wood Carving
41 inch x 17.5 inch x 6 inch
17.7 kg
Item Code: XQ99
Price: $1260.00
Shipping Free - 4 to 6 days
This item can be back ordered
Time required to recreate this artwork: 20 to 24 weeks
Advance to be paid now (% of product value): 20%
Balance to be paid once product is ready: 80%
The amount to be tendered as advance to back order this artwork: $252.00
Viewed 3509 times since 31st May, 2013
This four-armed statue of Lord Ganesha, though of medium size – about three and a half feet tall and one and a half feet wide, a well-tempered single piece of fine Bangai wood, the known South Indian timber used for temple wood carving now for centuries, the wood’s natural colour and texture affording it all its effects, represents the elephant god engaged in dance. In the image the artist has combined with the exuberance, vigour, tremendous energy and the beauty of movement – the aspects of dance that reveal into his legs, the perfect poise, grace, balance and divine composure – the bearing of the rest of the figure. In one image the artist has synthesized two ever conflicting aspects : the movement, the attribute of dance that divulge in the image’s lower half, and the amazing poise and symmetry –its cessation, the attribute of the other half. The two delightfully contrast as also mutually contribute, and that attributes to the image a distinction of its own.

With his left leg raised and knee flung further leftwards, and the toe of the right foot firmly planted on the lotus pedestal, heel raised and knee mildly twisted to right, the figure of Lord Ganesha is in the mode of ‘lasya’ – the dance of elegance and gentle moves revealing great aesthetic beauty. Despite that the head is a little left-inclining, the figure’s upper part, especially the hands that in dance usually gesticulate corresponding to the moves of legs, is largely static, or rather reveals a kind of symmetry : the geometry of statics, opposed to the dynamics of dance. Besides the identically carved attributes : elephant goad and noose carried in the upper hands greatly contributing to this symmetry aspect, the face of the elephant god reflects a kind of sublime stillness – the state of mere being, not being in the act. In divine iconography the dance – well defined and regulated moves, the source of the entire energy, represents life, and the deity’s all-pervading presence, the entire manifest cosmos. The image of Lord Ganesha, its one aspect revealing life, and the other, the entire manifest world, has thus rarer significance.

Though Nratya Ganapati is one of Lord Ganesha’s forms in his classical iconography dance is inherent to his being and manifests in most of his forms. Even his plain icons, seated or standing, seem to vibrate with rhythm, the inherent spirit of dance. Unlike Shiva who dances to dissolve or to his consort’s delight, Kali, to destroy, Vishnu, to suppress Bali, or Krishna, to subdue Kaliya, the venomous serpent, Lord Ganesha danced performing effortless and without an objective. In this image dance is inherent and an essential element of his being, it also corresponds to his Nratya Ganapati iconography, at least in the attributes the image is carrying – elephant goad, noose, and broken tusk. ‘Laddu’, the fourth, has been alternated with a book-like object, perhaps to denote his oceanic knowledge; however, a basket full of ‘laddus’ is placed on his right, and the one ‘laddu’ he is holding in his trunk in readiness to eat. Nratya Ganapati is usually an exalted form in ecstatic moves, the aspects replaced in the image for its far greater breadth.

The figure of the four-armed Ganapati has been modeled with a large pot belly, moderate height, legs and arms with muscular build, broad forehead with ‘tri-punda’ Shaivite mark, thoughtful eyes, right tusk broken, ears of moderate size and a straightened trunk with tip twisted to left. Besides his usual ornaments and a majestic crown with a circular disk the elephant god is wearing an elegantly pleated ‘antariya’ and a large sash tied around the waist. The image has been installed on a realistically carved cute lotus flower laid in the centre of a two-tiered elevated pedestal consisting of stylized lotus forms. A difficult composition, the image, engaged in dance and floating unsupported in the space, stands on the pedestal just with the toe of its right foot and sash-ends on the two sides being attached to it. A blend of dance into a form composed of an elephant trunk, a large belly and overall figural bulk is a challenge, and far greater when the image is required to reveal two mental dispositions, two sets of emotional bearing and two anatomical models – all in mutual conflict, and needless to say, the artist has successfully met it.

This description by Prof. P.C. Jain and Dr. Daljeet. Prof. Jain specializes on the aesthetics of literature and is the author of numerous books on Indian art and culture. Dr. Daljeet is the curator of the Miniature Painting Gallery, National Museum, New Delhi. They have both collaborated together on a number of books. .

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