She is the fairest of the devis, Her skin the unmistakable white of the snow-capped peak of Her heavenly father’s abode. She is never without Her veena, nor Her vahana, the graceful swan as pristine as She is. She is the wife of Lord Brahma, who is responsible for the creative process, and presides over learning and the arts, prerequisites to the same. She is Devi Sarasvati, floating about on the bed of Her blooming green lotus-throne (padmasana), in red and orange silks.
A gorgeous sunset-coloured halo graces Her crowned head. An aureole of flowers and vines surrounds the figure. Each of the aspect of this painting, especially these, have been finished painstakingly through batik-dyeing. It is a process that involves multiple rounds of waxing and resist-dyeing, with characteristic results as could be seen in this solemn, red-lipped Devi Sarasvati composition.
It captures the Devi in Her unassuming yet singular beauty. Note the delicate hands She plays on the veena and blesses Her devotees with; the feet that are as soft as the lotus-bed they are on; and the curve of the waist against which She supports Her instrument. Her swan is floating on the waters beneath Her, looking up to Her and quietly enjoying Her music. More lotuses and lilypads grace the deep waters in the foreground.
Resist dyeing is a popular element of fashion, but artists from the Orient have taken it to the next level by using the technique to create paintings such as this one of Maa Saraswati. The hallowed Goddess of learning and the arts is seen here next to Her vaahan, the swan, in all Her curvaceous beauty and wielding a classical musical instrument. Note the alluring backdrop in gorgeous tones of red and orange and ivory, created by repetitive waxing and dyeing.
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