Visual and Spatial Representation of Performances Unique to My Community

The performances I have chosen that are unique to my community are Dhol Tasha, Lezim and Lavani. All the three are very famous forms of Maharashtrian folk art. I used graphite as my drawing medium and a cartridge canvas to make these sketches as these are the materials I am most comfortable with.

The sketches above show different views of people playing Dhol Tasha. I mostly looked the internet and my photo gallery to get pictures from which I could sketch. While I was looking for photos and videos during my research, I realized that the amount of coordination, practice, precession and rhythm that a performance requires is massive, which is why people practice for months before they actually perform on the during the Ganesh Festival. I have myself played Dhol once so I know it is very heavy and it is difficult to carry it around. And we see in the images above, there are people carrying it around, playing it like no big deal. It is astonishing to see people perform this so effortlessly. I was also very happy that I could go back to the times when I actually saw/performed in Ganesh Festival, especially after the pandemic break.

These two sketches show women performing lezim, which is a dance form that is usually performed along with dhol tasha. It was really interesting to actually see in detail the working of the instrument called lezim after which the dance form was named. I discovered many facts like the origin of this dance comes from old exercises that wrestlers used to perform. Today we see no such connection while we see the performance.

The last art is Lavani. Lavani is very popular and known to everyone. I tried using different grades of micron and a black crayon to sketch these. I tried by best to capture the beauty and grace that is portrayed by the dancers during the performances. I struggle with drawing hands and feet so I tried my best to establish fair proportions in the figures, I hope I did justice to these.

As a whole, the exercise was very help to gain perspective and understand the nuances of these various art forms that we see and practice on a regular basis. We don’t realize how much practice and dedication goes into it. There is so much happening during the act, from costumes to music everything has its own rhythm that we generally over look but I could establish all these relations after understanding the art forms and trying to record those in the form of sketches.