This Kalighat painting shows Durga - the godess of Strength or Shakti as the central figure among her family riding on Â her animistic vehicle - a lion, spearing the demon Mahishasura below her.Â Durga is drawn with a very symmetrical body with ten arms.Â The jewelleries and ornamentation on the body and garments of the figures are created by fine white lines.Â The use of colour is bold and shows a predominance of red, blue, green and yellow.Â The painting is made on cotton canvas.
Kalighat paintings originated in 19th Century West Bengal, in the vicinity of the Kalighat temple in Kolkata. From depicting mythological stories, these paintings developed to reflect a variety of social themes- day to day events of everyday life in traditional Bengali society, caricatures of events, popular sayings and proverbs. The paintings are characterised by line drawings, the outlines of which are made with bold and elegant brush strokes. With shaded contours, the paintings have a plaque like effect. This refined art form is much sought after in India and abroad.
The painting is done byÂ Manu Chitrakar, the Patua Artist from West Bengal.Â