A favorite subject of the Puri painter is the Kandarpa Ratha, or the chariot of Kama, the god of love. This theme is based on the festivities at the Jagannatha temple. It shows the type of processional chariots which are used for festivals at the temple. Here, instead of an actual chariot, we have one composed of damsels wearing colorful clothes. They form the front portion of the chariot that carries the fluting Krishna. So enchanted are the women with the rhythm of his flute that they twist and turn, entwining themselves with each other, adding to the gaiety of the composition. The composite formation of the towering chariot is vivid enough to make the damsels look like decorative painted images on the actual mobile chariot. The Kandarpa Ratha is the outcome of a unique ritual in Orissa, which shows that Kandarpa (Kama) is full command of the orchestration of love that takes place in everyday life.
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