THE SCROLL SINGERS AND PAINTERS OF PATUA
on 4 sheets of paper mounted on cloth, 15 x 86 ins. on 2 bamboo sticks,
In the first scene Durga with ten arms and a trident, is surrounded by handmaids, an Owl, a Lion trampling a Cow, two Warriors one with a Cutlass, the other with Bow and Arrow, and a four armed Elephant Headed Ganesha. The second scene under a Baobab tree are three women and a baby. The first turbaned figure carries a yoke with 4 pots, a mother and child are seated in a hut, whilst the third remains outsided with another pot. The third scene shows a Godess, Pavarti, cradling a baby Ganesh, seated on a lotus flower on water, and attendant on a waterbird on the background. The third depicts a Lord on a throne in an elaborate pavilion, with two attendants male an female. The fourth is of a half naked man with a scimitar running off with an alarmed woman. In the fifth scene Durga with ten arms, is presiding over a captured girl about to be sacrificed. For generations Patua (Chitrakar) communities of West Bengal have been painters and singers of stories depicted in scrolls. Although Muslims they tell the stories and sing of the Muslim Saints as well as Hindu Gods and Goddesses. In the past they wandered from village to village receiving food and coins for their recitals. Over time there has been an erosion of this Art and way of life from other media forms. Recently a group have formed a cooperative to preserve and promote this ancient tradition, and as well as the ancient themes more secular subjects are often chosen for this Art Form.
Stock ref: 13393