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As prescribed, this Urdhva Ganapati form of the Elephant god has six arms, but the attributes held in these hands, save the broken tusk, are different. Instead of Urdhva Ganapati's sprig of paddy, lotus, sugar-cane bow, arrow and water lily this figure of Ganapati is seen holding in them noose, 'modaka', mace, goad and sword. The broken tusk is the only attribute common in his both manifestations. Urdhva Ganapati's golden hue has been retained but instead of carving him as seated with 'Shaktis' on his left thigh he has been represented here as standing and dancing. Simple face with 'tripunda' mark on his forehead and semi-circular ears with upper and lower ends protruded is characteristic of Urdhva Ganapati but his tusk, instead of turning to left curves to right. This is in adherence to neither his Urdhva Ganapati nor Nratya Ganapati form and is obviously an innovation. Ganesha is one of the four 'Adigurus' of dance, other three being Shiva, Kali and Vishnu in his Vamana and Krishna incarnations. Hence, Ganesha dances to all modes, moods, rhythm and pace. But his Nratya Ganapati form is usually his exalted and ecstatic dance form. This form of Lord Ganesha depicts 'lasya', the expressions of lovable tenderness. This is thus an innovative expansion of his Nratya Ganapati form as well.
Instead of much of his adherence to classical iconography the wood-carver seems to have sought delight in the rhythmic curves, unique balance, unity of conflicting forms and the quaintness of his figure. Queer pot-like belly, knotted knees, rounded ankles, horse-shoe-like turned ears and the zigzag form of arms creating their own geometrics, are quite curious and interesting attributes of the figure of Lord Ganesha. His extra large rounded pot belly, more swelled in dance, is not an amicable thing for his girdle or his loin cloth as none of them is able to keep its position. One of them has ascended far above belly's centre and the other descended far below the waist. His entire figure gives a feel of 'lasya', the dance of love and beauty but his half lifted diagonal feet are in themselves an absolute exposition of dance.
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.
Of Related Interest:
Dancing Ganesha (Silk Painting)
Nrittya Ganesha (Batik Painting On Cotton)
Dances of Ganesha (Orissa's Paata Painting)
Dancing Ganesha (Brass Statue)
Click Here to read the Article: Ganesha - the Elephant Headed God, Art and Mythology