18 May 2023
GAUDIYA NRITYER RUPADHRITI
Dr. MAHUA MUKHERJEE’s BOOK ON AHARYA
“Dr.Mahua Mukherjee’s book on Aharya sums up decades of her research and practice at the interface of costume – make up- ornament-audience-character-light-sound and stage. It draws on an extensive visual archive put together by her husband Amitabha Mukherjee – a musical maestro – in both West and East Bengal and illustrated with great skill and dedication by her mother, the renowned artist Smt. Chhabi Chakravarty,” says Kalyan Kumar Chakravarty, Retd IAS, Phd Harvard, former VC & DG, National Museum and former Chairman Lalit Kala Alkademi.
“It has harvested the visual imagery created by human being from prehistoric days to the present, showing the raiment-gestures and postures- crafted by them – in response to their subsistence strategies-as hunting gatherings—pastral-agricultural or peri urban people,” he described in detail in the foreword of the book published by Rabindra University in 2022.
The book demonstrates the Aharya art and Gauya dance practices from the 8th to the 12th century AD, during the Pala Sena period illustrating stone and terracotta sculptures of ancient temples. Many sketches of ancient ornaments, ‘kiritams’ and temple dancing sculptures were included in this book.
Dr. Mahua Mukherjee is an exponent, pioneer researcher who has revived the Indian Classical Dance form Gaudiya Nritya. Along with her husband Amitava Mukherjee she has been reviving the dance style through her career from 1980.
Mahua Mukherjee is the founder dance director of the institute, Gaudia Nritya Bharati and former director of Mitryan. She is a senior professor of the Department of Dance and former Dean of Faculty of Fine Arts of Rabindra Bharati University.