By Our Correspondent, Badakul, November 25, 2023: The 9th Chilika Shelduck Festival, which showcases unique traditional art forms for all its recreational, educational and adventure potential, took off to a colourful start here Friday. The festival was thrown open by national award-winning Patta painter Sudhir Maharana by lighting lamp.

Organised by ODI ART Centre – a unique art complex, nestled on the bank of Chilka, the five-day long festival primarily aims at the preservation of folk, tribal art and the artistic tradition; promotion of tangible and intangible culture and heritage and providing a platform for popularization of art and promoting tourism, the organizers said.

Welcoming the artists and audience Odi Art Centre chairman P.C. Mohanty expressed gratitude and joy as the festival entered its first international edition. Founder member Prasana Kumar Dash in his brief address underscored the need for fostering cultural pluralism, cultural and religious diversity and assured that ODI ART is taking it forward through various celebrations of heritage, culture, and global collaboration.

Participants from the state and country, along with invitees from South Korea, have made this year’s festival international. Students and delegates from South Korea visited the Nabagunjara sculpture, where they took an oath to preserve and promote heritage, culture, and diversity for the future.

The next highlight was a guided tour by Mr. Jitu Mishra, leading participants through the fourteen museums on the grounds. Flanked by two terracotta elephants, the entrance marked the beginning of a journey exploring unique traditional art forms. Anasarpatti, Palm leaf Pattachitra, Miniature paintings, wooden carved doors, and frames showcased a diverse range, from Hindu Mythology to the everyday lives of ancient men, tribal art from Africa, Bulhwa art from South Korea, porcelain figurines from Russia, Oshakothi Painting from Ganjam, and Jhotti, to name a few. Captivated by Mishra’s narratives behind each exhibit, students and delegates immersed themselves in the rich cultural tapestry. Emphasizing the importance of meaning in art, Mishra highlighted how art becomes redundant without its inherent significance.

Post-museum exploration, the students of St. Xavier’s High School, Banapur, displayed their skills in Kabaddi matches, with the boys’ team B and girls’ team A emerging victorious. The festivities continued with a vibrant local dance performance on the lawns, offering a teaser of the cultural richness to follow.

The evening featured diverse performances, including the Mask Dance by Korean artists of the Suyeong Yaru Conservation and the Animal Dance by Biswajanani Kala Parishad, promoting a 500-year-old tradition, Sahi Yatra by Puri, and others.

As the festival progresses, attendees can anticipate more highlights, such as former Chief Minister Giridhari Gamango’s 36-instrument performance, a Seminar on boosting Odisha’s creative economy, and experiential workshops, where hundreds of students will learn ten art forms, including terracotta dolls, Agra glass painting, and celebrated dancer Saswat Joshi’s enthralling Odissi performance.

Leave a Reply

Be the First to Comment!

Notify of