Culture & Litrature

Cricket matches come alive at doll exhibitions in Karnataka

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Mysore, October 12:   Cricket, as everyone knows, is extremely popular across the country. So much so, even Lord Ganesh can be seen playing the gentleman’s game!

Just visit the doll exhibition, organised as part of the Dasara festival, at Rangayana to see the cricket field, complete with Lord Ganesh batsmen, fielders and bowler. The exhibition has been organised by Gayatri Shankar. There are over 5,000 dolls on display, from a rural setting where bullock carts are the main mode of transport to toys for children. Other exhibits include idols of goddesses, mythological scenes painstakingly recreated such as ‘Ravan’s Dubar’, and monkeys constructing a bridge across the ocean to reach Lanka.

Festivals, rituals

Dolls have also been arranged to mark rituals and festivals such as Gokulashtami, Nagarapanchami and Sankranti. There are also idols of Lord Aiyappa and Lord Venkateshwara. Ms. Shankar brought the idol of Lord Krishna from Guruvayur in Kerala. Krishna is shown in the company of Radha and other gopikas. A slice of history is shown in the form of ‘pada puja’ of the Maharaja of Mysore.

“This is the eighth year I am holding the doll exhibition,” Ms. Shankar, who lives in Agrahara in the city, told The Hindu. All the dolls belong to her. “I buy dolls wherever I go,” she said. The Geetopadesha dolls depicting Lord Krishna preaching the Gita to Arjuna was a new addition this year, she said. The dolls are made of clay, and paper. “It’s marvellous,” said Prateeksha, one of the visitors. The dolls depicted the rich culture of our land, she said after going around the exhibition.

In cafes, houses

The Anima Boutique Café at Vontikoppal in V.V. Puram, which is an art hub, is also holding a doll exhibition.

Umamaheshwari, a homemaker, living at no. 157, Aniketana Road in Kuvempunagar, has been arranging dolls since 1983. Vidya R. Shankar, living at no. 589, I cross, Vishwamanava Jodi Raste, Kuvempunagar, has also organised a doll exhibition. Depictions include the ‘visit’ of Lord Venkateshwara to Mysore to witness the Dasara festivities, and sequences from the Srinivasa Kalyana and Sri Krishna Charita.

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