Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. 2014 Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd.

2014 Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. 2014 Indo-Caribbean Cultur
ISSN 1683-4143
http://icctrinidad.wordpress.com/
2014. Trinidad & Tobago Volume 15, Number 2.
Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
After Carnival, Divali is the second largest open-air national festival in multi-ethnic
Trinidad and Tobago. Te Hindu Festival of Lights is marked by the lighting of
millions of deyas [clay lamps], some of which are placed on split bamboo tubes bent in
artistic designs. It is estimated that over ten million deyas are lit in households, temples,
streets, ofces and parks in one week. Te lights twinkle in the shadows of free public
performances by actors, models, drummers, dancers, musicians and singers.
During the days and nights preceding Divali, non-Hindus and non-Indians actively
join in the celebration by lighting deyas, wearing Indian ethnic clothes, and partaking
in traditional Indian foods and sweets. Te festival climaxes with a display of
resplendent freworks on Divali night, which has been pronounced by the state as a
public holiday since 1966.
Hindus comprise the second largest religious group in Trinidad and Tobago after
Roman Catholics. Most Indians are Hindus, and Indians represent more than half of
the population of the tiny Caribbean twin-island state (1.3 million).

ISSN 1683-5026 Volume 15, Number 2
Copyright © 2014 by the respective artists

Advertising: Mera Heeralal and Ramona Harripersad
Cover and page design: Preddie Partap
Cover image by Shalini Seeraram entitled Renewal of Life
Proof readers: Vindhar Suraj and Kristina Mohammed
Consultant: Richard Rampersad
Editor-in-Chief and Chairman: Dr Kumar Mahabir

Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. (IDP).
10 Swami Avenue, Don Miguel Road
San Juan, Trinidad and Tobago, West Indies

Tel: (868) 674-6008 Tel/fax: (868) 675-7707
E-mail: dmahabir@gmail.com
Website: http://icctrinidad.wordpress.com
Divali Festival in
Trinidad and Tobago
The 2005 edition of the ICC
magazine on the theme
“Temples and Tourism in
Trinidad and Tobago” won an
Excellence-in-Journalism Award
Te body of work featured in this
magazine represents various visual
interpretations of Hindu and (East)
Indian cultural heritage in Trinidad
and Tobago. Te collection embodies
the power to evoke the emotions of
viewers through Hindu and Indian
aesthetics.
As a highly visual culture, Hinduism
is mainly characterised by brightly
coloured and ornamental images of
gods, goddesses and demons. Tese
and other images have captured
the imagination of artists and
other cultural workers. Te artistic
exploration of Hindu and Indian
images by artists take several forms
and media which include drawings,
mosaics, installations, rangoli, mehndi,
mixed-media, conventional and digital
paintings, and three-dimensional
designs.
Te ambiguous nature of “abstract”
pieces by Asha Beharry and Indira
Jairam encourages viewers to decipher
the meaning of their work and
arrive at their own interpretations.
Meenakshi Persad, Sarah Chadee and
Shalini Seereeram express their ideas
using a strong sense of harmonious
design, intense colour, rhythmic fuid
lines and geometric motifs, resulting
in visually engaging illustrations.
Anushka Lutchmiesingh’s works
shift from a focus on objective reality
to an emphasis on subjectivity and
complexity. Candice Sobers’ creations
confront viewers with contemplative
ideas of “real” and “surreal.” Aakash
Beharry reveals new perspectives of
familiar subjects by “zooming in” on
physical attributes of Hindu deities.
Shelly Mehandibaig, Shannon
Yip Yang and Amit Singh used two
techniques of art expression: the
traditional drawing style and the
digital painting method. Kervina
Persad is also skilful in using more
than one medium through her
exploration of the traditional acrylic
paint on canvas, and the more creative
experiment with broken tiles.
With his impressionist/cubist style,
Kenderson Norray captures the
festivity of Hosay commemoration.
Sharon Vidale presents a rich and
detailed analysis of the rites, customs
and traditions of the Trinidad Hindu
wedding ceremony. Antonio Butts,
Marissa Ramdeen, Rajesh Harnarine,
Kajal Madho, James Armstrong and
Curtis Matthew have been remarkably
successful in depicting women in a
variety of ways: dancing, toting water
pots and as a dulahin [bride].
Ravita Gangaram’s contribution
captures sacred items used in pooja
[Hindu ceremonial worship]. Richard
Rampersad uses a contrast of tones
and a conspicuous depiction of light
to portray Lord Ganesh, the Remover
of Obstacles.
Vishana Gajadhar and Rebecca Foster
depict symbols and images of Hindu
and Indian culture in Trinidad: a deya
[clay lamp], gestures of respect, the
performing arts and the-Temple-in-
the-Sea. Shivana Lalla and Aneesa
Karim explore the oriental artistic
medium of rangoli and mehndi
respectively. Tese art forms are
growing in popularity among young
visual practitioners in the Caribbean.
With a total of 26 contributing
artists, this compilation presents a
mix of established and aspiring visual
practitioners whose work demonstrates
competence and maturity in their
respective genres. Te presence of
non-Indian artists working on these
themes suggests that they have been
exposed to a certain degree, and have
been infuenced, by Hindu and Indian
culture.
Tis magazine is a compilation
of artistic works by Indian artists,
and on Indian cultural themes by
non-Indian artists. Te truth is that
not many Indians in Trinidad and
Tobago are practitioners of the visual
arts. It is important that this under-
representation be addressed.
Te visual arts connect the
imagination with human existence
often through paint, pencil and paper.
It is a creative expression of culture
that is real or imagined that taps
into a higher aesthetic and spiritual
appreciation of life. Visual art itself is
a fundamental part of culture, and as
such, enhances the quality of life. It
brings joy, enrichment and fulflment
to every human soul, and can create
positive emotions among individuals.
Artists examine life from diferent
perspectives that are often refreshing
and exhilarating, and even mundane
aspects are made magical.
Editorial Visual Arts on Indian cultural heritage
Art is a form of expression, communication, exploration, imagination, and cultural and historical
comprehension. The visual arts include forms such as ceramics, drawing, painting, printmaking,
flmmaking, design, architecture, sculpture, crafts, photography and video. The performing arts, such as
dance and drama, also include aspects of the visual arts. Visual arts are also applied to forms such as
industrial design, graphic design, fashion design, interior design and decorative art.
Dr. Kumar Mahabir, Editor-in Chief
and Chairman, Indo-Caribbean Divali
Publication Ltd (IDP).
Assistant Professor, University of Trinidad
and Tobago (UTT).
Richard Rampersad, B.A. Visual Arts
(Hons.), UWI, contributing editor.
4
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Divali Greetings
from the Prime Minister of the
Republic of Trinidad & Tobago
Te Honourable
Kamla Persad-Bissessar,
S.C., M.P.
Prime Minister of the Republic
of Trinidad and Tobago
I am pleased, once more, to join
the entire Hindu community in
celebrating this auspicious occasion
of Divali. Known in English as the
“Festival of Lights,” this holiday is
celebrated by Hindus around the
world, and for most Hindus, marks
the beginning of a New Year and a
New Life.
Divali is about the enlightenment
of the soul, the triumph over the
darkness of ignorance, and stepping
into a cleaner and brighter world.
It is the triumph of good over evil
and it calls all Hindus to a radical
transformation and renewal of life
that incorporates knowledge, truth,
and beauty in all hearts.
Once transformed, we can then
live our lives as lights and beacons of
hope, compassion, truth, wisdom,
love, kindness and forgiveness in our
homes and communities.
Tis, in my respectful view, is the
meaning of Divali. An authentic
transformation of the hearts, minds,
and souls of all of us in order to
selfessly serve one another, and
humankind, in truth and love so that
everyone can prosper and live lives
consistent with human dignity, our
higher aspirations and God’s will and
vision in our lives.
Tis is the spiritual prosperity
we must all pray for. Tis is the
prosperity that we must earnestly ask
for from Mother Lakshmi as we seek
her maternal assistance in cultivating
and accumulating spiritual wealth –
individually and collectively.
Fellow citizens, the fact that we,
as citizens of Trinidad and Tobago,
can appreciate and celebrate diverse
cultures and religious holidays as a
united people, and as a nation, speaks
volumes about our shared values and
our profound respect for the tenets of
the variety of faiths comprising our
multicultural society.
It is our unity in diversity that
defnes our character as a nation
and it is that which will propel us –
working hand in hand – to a future
that is flled with hope and prosperity
for all … not only for ourselves but
for our children and our children’s
children.
Let us then recommit ourselves on
this auspicious occasion of Divali to
be the best we can be … steadfastly
adhering to the tenets of our faith,
and instilling those same moral
and spiritual values to our children
through our own good example.
As we light the deyas this Divali, let
it be for us a new beginning … for
ourselves, our families, and for our
country.
On behalf of the Government of the
Republic of Trinidad and Tobago,
all citizens of goodwill, and my own
family, I wish each and every one of
you a Shubh Divali.
6
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Divali Greetings
from the Ministry of National
Diversity & Social Integration
Dr. the Honourable
Rodger Samuel
Minister of National Diversity
and Social Integration
It is my honour to extend Divali
greetings to the readers of the
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication
magazine, the Hindu community and
all citizens of Trinidad and Tobago.
As we, at the Ministry of National
Diversity and Social Integration,
continue to work to ensure
appreciation and understanding
of the history and heritage of our
nation, we acknowledge the work
of the Indo-Caribbean Divali
Publication Ltd., as an organisation
which has lifted the Hindu heritage
of our nation and ofered insight
and understanding into deep-rooted
aspects of our national identity.
At the Ministry, which is a resource
and an advocate for the promotion
of diversity, nationalism, patriotism,
and inclusion, we are the proud
keepers of the heritage and history
of our nation. Trough the National
Museum and Art Gallery, the
National Trust of Trinidad and
Tobago, and the National Archives
of Trinidad and Tobago, we are able
to form and focus our eforts to
preserve, display and make known the
aspects of our identity which make us
who we are today.
Divali, the Festival of Lights, has
become an indelible part of the
culture of this nation, and many
nations around the world. It carries
countless life lessons and morals for
all of humanity regardless of religious
denomination. As the Ministry
responsible for ecclesiastical afairs,
we have recognised the contribution
of the Hindu community and their
creativity in the feld of visual arts.
With the theme for this year’s
publication focusing on “Visual
Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage in
Trinidad and Tobago”, I would like
to re-emphasize my afrmation that
art has no language. It crosses borders
and gives you the courage to wonder,
hope, and aspire for greatness. Te
pages of this magazine are a true
indication of the unique talent of
the people of Trinidad and Tobago,
of which we are indeed proud. With
each type of media, we appreciate
the styles, the vivid descriptions
of the gods and goddesses, the art
of mehindi, and the solidity of
sculptures. We relate the beauty of
the visual arts with the light which
Divali represents; its splendor of
a triumph, its glory of love and a
brighter tomorrow.
On this auspicious occasion in
our nation, let us allow the light of
Divali to enter into our hearts, minds
and lives and foster the art of giving
and forgiving, rising and shining,
uniting and unifying, prospering and
progressing and illuminating our
inner selves.
Tank you, and may the light of
Mother Lakshmi shine upon us all.
8
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Amit
Rameshwar Singh
Art has been my fascination ever since I can remember. It is something
that has driven me all my life, and it is the reason why I became a graphic
designer straight out of school. In my younger days, hardly a paper would
go untouched. My school books were all ‘decorated’ with anything that
came to mind.
“Namaste” originated from the
language of Sanskrit and means, “Te
divinity in me acknowledges the
divinity in you.” “Namaste” is a very
powerful word. During my entire life,
I have used the greeting “Namaste” to
address close family members, but I
have rarely used it to strangers. It is part
of my tradition and culture and I feel
strongly about it. I am not a shaking-
hand type of person, not because of
cleanliness, but because I was taught
about spiritual vibrations of people.
A composed or happy person may,
in fact, have negative vibrations. By
shaking that person’s hands, negative
vibrations are transferred. Today’s
society disregards this fact. Te transfer
of vibrations is a scientifc fact.
Several months ago, I met with members of Te Chinmaya Mission in
McBean, Couva. Tey needed material to promote an upcoming camp. Te
idea arose of depicting Ved Vyasa teaching children, and Lord Krishna blowing
the conch in a Caribbean setting.
Te camp was intended to focus on the teachings of Lord Krishna. Te
organizers wanted an original design rather than an “image of the net.”
Instead of splicing together a set of copied images, I suggested doing an
illustration, since it would depict originality and give the camp the creativity
it needed. I am not a fan of 2D digital art, but this method proved to be the
fastest to capture the style I had envisioned.
Ved Vyasa & Lord Krishna goes to the Caribbean
Namaste
Contact:  732-7530  amitgraphicarts.com  facebook.com/immaturestudio  @amitprsingh
Medium: Pencil on paper
Actual size: 8.5 x 11 inches
Medium: Digital painting
Actual size: 8.5 x 11 inches
10
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Aneesa Karim
Aneesa Karim is a professional mehndi [henna] artist specialising in bridal
mehndi and custom body art. Her decision to become a full-fedged mehndi
artist took root in 2010, after graduating from the U.W.I, St. Augustine.
With a background in Visual Arts, she has always been inspired to be creative.
Karim is known for her precise and intricate application of mehndi on the
body, but she also works on canvas, candles and pottery. Te Newsday’s
Woman Weekly, Guardian’s Womanwise magazine, and macocaribbean.com
have highlighted her work.
I love doing intricate and creative designs on the feet due
to the space available. I am infuenced by the preferences
of the person on whom I am working, but it is more
exciting when I let the design lead me. Such was the
case with this design. While quite time-consuming and
tedious, I never rushed the process. I am a bit obsessive
and compulsive when it comes to being meticulous and
unique. Tis design incorporates the use of Indian motifs
and intricate lacy patterns that were all drawn together in
the delicate fow of mehndi. Tis image shows the bride
lifting her lehenga choli [an Indian bridal outft] to expose
her exquisitely-adorned henna-stained feet
Tis Indian bridal design was inspired by a scene from
the epic love story of the Ramayana. Lord Rama instructed
Lord Hanuman to build a stone bridge across the ocean
to rescue his beloved Sita. Lord Hanuman was obstructed
by Sovanna Macha, leader of the mermaids and one
of the daughters of the evil Ravana, who had captured
Sita. Sovanna Macha was impossible to catch, so Lord
Hanuman decided to woo her. After struggling for some
time, they realised that they had fallen in love with each
other. Tis piece creates more cultural awareness for the
wider public. It is one of my favourite bridal works, partly
because it challenged my artistic capabilities.
Hanuman & Sovanna Macha
(The Monkey & the Mermaid)
Bridal Feet - Ready for the Big Day
Contact:  info@akmehndi.com  www.akmehndi.com  Aneesa Karim - Mehndi Artist
12
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Antonio Butts
Butts’s work refects a multi-cultural society. Accordingly, his themes are drawn
from various aspects of the diversity that characterises Caribbean culture. He
uses mostly acrylics and watercolours to highlight the essence of his work.
Some people ask me, “What is art?” I say, “It is a personal expression that
the artist shares with society. Art does not verbally express itself, but visually
speaks for itself. My art is my life, so when I paint or share my paintings, I
am exposing a part of myself to the world. My painting styles express my
‘Caribbean-ness.’ ”
Te painting
illustrates a
woman of beauty
and grace who,
even the gods,
could not stop
admiring. Her
blue colour, like
that of some of the
gods, represents
determination
and the ability to
deal with difcult
situations. Blue is
a spiritual colour;
it is symbolic
of balance and
healing. She has a
stable mind and
strong character.
Sherifa - Indian Princess The Divine Couple
Contact:  antoniodesign@yahoo.com
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Actual size: 4.5 x12 inches
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Actual size: 4.5 x 12 inches
Tis painting was
inspired by a 7th century
Kama Sutra scripture
based on sex and love.
Tere is a diference
between unenlightened
sexuality, sexuality and
sutra. Sex becomes
sacred and divine
when approached from
the heart and body
as opposed to when
approached solely from
the mind.
Te lotus fower in this
painting represents purity,
self-transcendence and
expanding consciousness.
Te woman in the asana
position facing her
partner, heart to heart,
represents a universal
mood, the path of love,
respect and togetherness
for each other. Te male
yab-yum represents the
male principle uniting
with the female principle,
expressing the sacredness
of sexuality as a spiritual
path to enlightenment.
Chakra Publishing House Ltd.
10 Swami Avenue, Don Miguel Road, San Juan, Trinidad and Tobago, West Indies
Tel: (868) 674-6008. Tel/fax: (868) 675-7707, E-mail: dmahabir@gmail.com; mahab@tstt.net.tt
http://chakrapub.wordpress.com/
Indian Caribbean Folklore Spirits by Kumar Mahabir. Illustrations by Aneesa Khan
This captivating book provides details of the
presence of a brood of spirits believed to roam
the Caribbean since the abolition of slavery.
For the first time in history, the existence of
these spirits is being revealed collectively to
the general public, in this compilation. These
supernatural beings are (1) the raa-khas – a
deformed, demonic newborn child, (2) the
chu-rile – a spirit of a deceased pregnant
2010. 32 pp. 9 x 7¾ inches.
ISBN 978-976-95049-5-0-2-0. Paperback.
TT$45. or US$12.
(includes handling, registration and local/foreign postage)
woman, (3) the saap-in – a woman who transforms into a snake, (4) Dee Baba – a mythical
protector of the house and land, and (5) the jinn, Sheik Sadiq – a spirit that can be captured
in a bottle to grant wishes. Written for readers of all ages, every page of the five stories is
enhanced with beautiful coloured illustrations.
Available
at Chakra
and major
bookstores
14
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Anushka Lutchme
Singh
I am a twenty-two year old Bhakti Shastri devotee and Pharmacy student. My
attraction to the Holy Names of Sri Krishna made me start drawing at the
age of fourteen. With no formal training, I rely on my heart to channel the
emotions to my pen and paintbrush. Lord Krishna is the focus of my work,
and also the focus of my soul. Hare Krishna!
Tis drawing symbolises Vaishnavism. Radha-Krishna is
lotus-like in every way, and so the lotus is representative
of them, with ‘Radhe’ and ‘Krishna’ written repeatedly.
Te right hand represents the Vaishnava’s longing for
Radha-Krishna and also the path to obtain their mercy.
‘Om Keshavaya Namaha’ is written on the ring fnger. Tis
mantra is recited while placing tilak on the forehead, using
this fnger. Te tilak then becomes the lotus footprint of
Sri Krishna, and it represents full surrender onto him. On
the arm, a prayer glorifying the beauty of Radharani (by
Srila Rupa Gosvami) is written. A Vaishnava can never
obtain Krishna consciousness without pleasing Srimati
Radharani, and so he places himself under her protection.
Jai Sri Radhe Shyam!
Tis piece is a tribute to the maintainer of the material
realm. His conch, chakra, mace and lotus (fower) are
depicted. On the lotus, the Sri Hari Stotram is written,
as well as various names of Vishnu, like ‘Narayana’
and ‘Vasudeva’. Sacred mantras glorifying Him are
written throughout. Te Maha Mantra and the Vishnu
Sahastranama Stotram (by Sri Veda Vyasa) are written
throughout the mace. ‘Maha Vishnu’ and ‘Bharat’
are written repeatedly on the chakra, as this became
manifested as Bharat, the brother of Sri Ramachandra.
Similarly, ‘Shatrughan’ another darling brother, is written
on the conch. Jai Maha Vishnu!
Maha Vishnu
Radhika Dasi
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Asha Beharry
As an amateur artist, I see art as a way of not only expressing one’s thoughts
in paintings, drawings, collages, etc. For me, art includes any creative form
which uses available resources to capture memories and communicate stories
to the world. I also incorporate text and photography into my work. I use
watercolours as the medium, and use various sizes of brushes to mix/fll in the
colours. I am fond of using threading technique (threads coated with paint)
for abstracts.
Created by “threading,” this
abstract piece refects the colours of
Holi or “Phagwa” as it is commonly
known in Trinidad. “Holike Rang”
engages the imagination, being
seemingly unique to each person’s
interpretation.
Hōlīkēraṅga
(Colours of Holi)
Covered with miles of coconut trees,
Manzanilla’s shoreline has given rise
to the production of litres of pure
oil used in the lighting of our deyas
[clay lamps]. Manzanilla has become
a popular site for celebrating “Kartik,”
which is a cleansing water festival.
Manzankēkinārē
(Manzan’s Shore)
Contact:  ashbeharry@live.com
Medium: Watercolour base with
acrylic clear coat
Actual size: 7 x 8.5 inches
Medium: Watercolour base with
acrylic clear coat
Actual size: 7 x 8.5 inches
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Candice Sobers
Mrs. Candice Sobers is a conceptual artist with an emphasis on contemporary
art practice. She has a B.A. in Visual Arts with First Class Honours, and is
currently an M.Phil. candidate in Cultural Studies at the UWI. She has had
joint exhibitions at the National Museum, Rainy Days Ellersie Plaza, In2Art
and the Art Society of Trinidad and Tobago. She conducted a practice-based
thesis on “Techniques of resourcefulness and Survival among working-class
Trinidadians.”
Te making of the cocoyea broom is specifc to history and
ancestry, and has contributed to an East Indian working
class culture. “Ancestral Skill” embodies this activity and
culture. Te painting demonstrates the routine of making
a cocoyea broom by this grandmother of ten. It reveals a
complex, yet natural ease of the hand stripping away the
green blades from the spine.
Ancestral Skill
Followers of
the Hindu faith
demonstrate religiosity
as an expression
of obeisance to
the heavens for
sustenance, wealth,
peace and health. Tis
observed condition
was translated into
the painting. Te act
of supplication is the
humble request from
Lord Vishnu in the
hope that repeated
prayer would cause
a paradigm shift in a
situation or manifest a
miracle.
Te favours of East Indian delicacies are
savoured more delectably when served on a
banana leaf and eaten with the hands in the
traditional style.
Supplication
Fig Leaf
Contact:  candycanefeld@hotmail.com  468-0443/358-2007
Medium: Acrylic and pen on canvas Actual size: 8 x 12 inches
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Medium: Mixed (acrylic, wood, gel on stretched canvas)
Actual size: 23 x 36 inche
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Tis piece depicts a little boy performing aarti
[waving of lights] to his grandparents. Te
grandparents raise their hands to give blessings
to their grandson. Tis gesture signifes that the
grandparents have an aspect of God within them
which the little boy acknowledges by bowing his
head. Both grandparents are portrayed in traditional
Indian wear. Malas [garlands] are placed around their
necks and fowers adorn their heads. Performing aarti
is a form of respect which revolves around God, the
centre of all life.
Aarti
“Heritage” embodies some cultural aspects of Trinidad
and Tobago. Odissi is one of the oldest surviving dance
forms of India which is performed in this country. Te
curved lines of the dancers give a sense of movement and
grace. In the composition, the sitar and tabla represent
instruments which are used to produce rhythm, melody
and harmony. Te lit deya is symbolic of the triumph of
knowledge over ignorance. Deyas are lit for worship and
during the celebration of Divali. Te Hindi text represents
the ancient gayatri mantra. It is believed that by chanting
this mantra with devotion, one can achieve success,
happiness and fulfllment.
Heritage
Contact:  vishi_g@hotmail.com
Actual size: 10 x 12 inches
Medium: Mixed Media
Medium: Mixed Media
Actual size: 12 x 16 inches
Vishana Gajadhar
Vishana Gajadhar is 20 years of age and lives in Piarco. At a very young age,
Gajadhar knew she wanted to pursue art, as it was more than just a hobby
but a destined goal. Te passion for the visual art is inspired every day. She
uses art as a vessel to portray what she experiences through her eyes. Gajadhar
graduated in 2013 with a Certifcate in Visual Arts from UWI and is now
pursuing her B.A.
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Indira Jairam
Born out of a marriage of talents, Ms. Indira Jairam emerged from a world
where creativity came naturally, and innovation was the key. Her talent
was nurtured throughout the years. Jairam is involved in drama and stage
management as well as Ramleela, costuming, mehndi and body art, rangoli,
and even food. She adds her own aesthetic touch to everything in which she
is involved and transforms it into a work of art. Completing a Certifcate in
Visual Arts, she plans to show the world how she sees things through art.
As the damsel spins and brings forth spring
Soon another chapter will begin
Her life spins forth, right in front her eyes
As she’s trying hard not to cry
From girlhood to womanhood, a journey unfolds
Her future after marriage, a story untold
Mehndi drawn, music played
Guests arrive all arrayed
A magical moment frozen in time
When the young daughter becomes a fne wife
Tis piece encapsulates all the emotion inside
Spun out and seen through the Dulahin’s eyes
Tradition of colour
Tis piece is a confict between, and combination of, traditional
and experimental rangoli styles. Starting with a watercolour
background, the artist sought to give the piece structure through
the solid density of pencil frottage. She then worked her way up
to add a breath of life with coloured pencils. Tis abstract piece
illustrates a number of images visible only through careful study.
Tis artwork will not be appreciated by those minds that
cannot comprehend the beauty that lies beneath layers of sweat
and turmoil. Te piece is an expression of the liberation of the
congested emotions sufocating the artist, which she released bit
by bit and stroke by stroke.
Out of confusion
Contact:  indira_jairam@hotmail.com
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
James “Jim”
Armstrong
Artist James (Jim) Armstrong is a Tobagonian artist who has emerged as one of
the prominent representational impressionist artists in Trinidad and Tobago.
His art works are steeped in the representation of the culture of his native
Tobago. Jim also spent some of his formative years in San Juan, Trinidad,
which also aforded him exposure to aspects of the Indo-Trini culture.
Hosay has been celebrated in Trinidad since
1854, just over a decade after the arrival of
Indian indentured workers who came to work
on the sugar cane plantations. Hosay was
concentrated in some communities and was
mainly observed as an Indian commemoration.
Apart from the religious aspect, it has emerged
to become a community festival.
Te celebration is characterised by the parade
of colourful tadjahs [decorated tombs] and
the dancing of moons. Tere are also the
pulsating rhythms of the dholes [bass] and
Hosay Drum Band
Indian Dancer
Trinidad and Tobago has a large population of persons
of Indian descent whose fore parents came to the island as
indentured workers. Tese Indian workers brought a variety
of religious customs and festivals which have prevailed
through the years since 1845. Tey also brought various
forms of folk and Indian classical dances, including, inter alia:
Kathak, Orissi and Kuchipudi. It is well known that these
dances are characterised by distinctive make-up, costumes
and movements. Perhaps the most common type of dance,
representative of Trinidad is chutney. Te term is derived
from chatak, which is a spicy condiment. Te “Indian
Dancer” depicts the embodiment of rhythmic pelvic and
hand movements, some of which trail distinctively vibrant
fabrics.
Contact:  armstro7@hotmail.com
Medium: Oil on canvas
Actual size: 28 x 40 inches
Medium: Oil on Canvas
Actual size: 30 x 40 inches
staccato tassa drums, accompanied by cymbals. Tis annual
street celebration is not unlike carnival. Playing in the “Hosay
Drum Band” causes the more energetic drummers to sweat.
Some fervent folks in the community queue up for a turn on
the drums.
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This book discusses the relationship between traditional
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and Tobago. It focuses on folk masseuses, and the new
mothers and newborns they treat. The two medical
systems are presented in the context of racial, ethnic, class
and gender dynamics which give rise to issues of power
and control. The study is located in the political-economic
context of the Third World which has a history of
dependency on foreign goods and services which
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Kajal Madho
Kajal Madho attended Lakshmi Girls’ Hindu College where she placed 4th in
the CAPE Unit 2, Art and Design Regional Merit List. Kajal’s artwork was
displayed at the Piarco International Airport and the Central Bank, and on
the walls on Wrightson Road, Port-of Spain, as well as in Cuba and Scotland.
Kajal is essentially a self-taught artist. However, she owes her success to her
secondary school teacher, Ms. Quan Hong, for the encouragement and
never-ending support. In her opinion, art is possibly the most intense form
of individualism of which the world is aware and it enables one to express
thoughts and moods in the most comfortable way.
“Sari red” is a monochromatic piece which depicts
a Bharat Natyam dancer. Bharat Natyam is a type of
classical Indian dance which exudes vitality, strength,
charisma and grace. Te style is often referred to as
the “fre dance”. Terefore, I used the colour red to
portray the dance form.
Sari Red
“Solemn” is a portrait of an Indian woman. She carries
a blank expression on her face. Tough her expression is
blank, a sea of emotions rages within the depths of her
eyes. One can sense feelings of anger, sorrow, confusion,
heartbreak and happiness while looking at her blank, tear-
stained face.
Solemn
Contact:  470-3512  kajalmadho@hotmail.com
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Actual size: 12 x 16 inches
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Actual size: 16 x 20 inches
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
“Te Wonders of Mosaic - Trough the eyes of Lord
Hanuman” stands 8ft tall and 4ft wide. It was created
using broken pieces of tiles which took approximately
4-5 months to complete. As a young child growing
up in a Hindu home and family, I have always felt a
strong connection to and admiration for the deity Lord
Hanuman. Te entire creative process was one of the most
uplifting and therapeutic experiences I have ever had. Te
tiles were broken with a hammer and then assembled in
an almost puzzle-like fashion. Upon completion, “Te
Wonders of Mosaic - Trough the eyes of Hanuman” was
blessed according to Hindu rites and donated to a temple
located in Guaracara, Trinidad.
The Wonders of Mosaic - Through
the eyes of Lord Hanuman
“Te Remover of All Obstacles” was done using acrylic
paint on a canvas board. It was inspired by the Hindu
deity, Lord Ganesh, and created as a personal reminder of
believing in oneself. Lord Ganesh is widely revered as the
deity of beginnings, and the remover of interference and
difculties. From the moment paint transfers from a brush
to canvas, it has the ability to remove stress or misfortune
from the artist. Combining these two principles proved
to be very successful and satisfying because they exuded
optimism and calmness.
The Remover of All Obstacles
Contact:  737-7722  deanna_kdp@hotmail.com
Medium: Paint on canvas
Actual size: 9 x 12 inches
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Kervina
Deanna Persad
At the age of 22, my desire to do art has continuously proven to be the one
thing that has never failed me. I am currently in my fnal year of pursuing a
B.A. (Bachelors of Arts) in Visual Arts at Te University of the West Indies
(UWI), and specialising in the feld of Design.
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Te bilna and chowke are traditional
kitchen tools used mainly by East Indian
women. Even with advanced technology for
meal preparation, these tools continue to
hold a permanent place in our culture. Te
use of textile, mirror, sequins and mehndi
drawings ofer a contrast in surface texture to
the wooden tools. Te contrast is symbolic
of the role that women continue to play. Te
hard and soft surface transforms a common
utilitarian object into one of aesthetic
prominence. Teir interplay echoes the harsh
reality of daily toil, both in and out of the
home, versus the delicate nature of feminine
beauty.
With India in Mind (3-dimensional decorative piece)
Te method of carrying water on one’s head
is no longer done. During indentureship, this
method was the primary mode of water transport
in Trinidad, and still is for many families in
rural India today. Tis practice is performed
mainly by women and is a skill that is learnt
from childhood. Te act of balancing a full pot
of water - sometimes one on top of the other -
reveals the importance of women and daughters
in maintaining tradition. Tis act also illustrates
the challenge of balancing several duties that
women perform. Teir hurried steps reveal the
urgency of purpose.
The Water Carriers
Contact:  msalome_r@hotmail.com
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Actual size: 12 x 16 inches
Medium: Mixed (wood, fabric, mirror, sequins, fabric glue, bilna and chowke)
Actual size: 17.25 x 11.5 inches
Marisa S.
Ramdeen
Marisa S. Ramdeen was born and raised in Arima. She earned a Certifcate
in Visual Arts and was granted the Pat Chu Foon Award for Best Certifcate
Student in Visual Arts in 2009. She also received the Eastman-Christensen
Prize for Excellence in 2011. She graduated with a B.A. in Visual Arts with
First Class Honours. Ramdeen received the MP Alladin Award for Best
Degree Visual Art Student in 2012. She was a part of the commissioned
team that painted a mural to commemorate the legacy of Arima for the 50th
Independence Day celebrations. She currently teaches Visual Arts at North
Gate College, St. Augustine.
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Te Temple-in-the-sea is a popular tourist attraction
where people often go to seek salvation, peace and
comfort. On any given day, one can fnd people waiting
for the sun to set to catch the breath-taking view. Te
temple is strategically placed almost in the centre of the
painting, which makes the site appear to be foating.
Tis stylised rendition emphasises the conical shape of
the domes. Te piece is characterised by playful lines and
warm colours.
Temple in the sea
Tis piece explores Indian music, dance, religion and
design. Te composition is emblematic of a plethora of
symbolism and iconography associated with Indian and
Hindu culture. Te dramatic contrast, with the warm and
cool hues, can be interpreted on the metaphoric level as a
people with an ancient and dynamic culture which is still
fourishing and thriving in a contemporary space. Te
fuid nature of the lines in the piece allows the viewer’s eyes
to travel smoothly within the picture plane. Additionally,
the tasteful and logical placement of the compositional
elements allows for the background, middle-ground and
foreground dynamic.
Embodiment of culture
Contact:  Meenakshi Photography
Medium: Acrylic and pen on canvas
Actual size: 12 x 9 inches
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Actual size: 20 x 16 inches
Meenakshi
Ganga Persad
I am an artist and photographer with a B.A. in Visual Arts (Special) from
the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine. I do not limit myself
to any one medium. I also challenge myself to create works of art that
deal with daily issues afecting our society. My photography tends to go
beyond the usual/typical.
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
One of the most prominent accents of an Indian bride
is the elegance of her bridal sari [dress]. Tis painting was
inspired by an actual bride for her wedding. Te sari was
draped in a fashionable style to portray the easy fow and
the transformation of the fabric. Emphasis was placed
on colour and blends, as opposed to decorative work on
actual bridal saris. Te jewellery was kept simple with
an elaborated nose ring to highlight the portrayal. I am
inspired more by colour as opposed to decorative printing.
My love for Indian clothing made these pieces a pleasure
to execute
“Suhagan” The Bride
Tis painting depicts Radha, a divine Indian woman in
mythical India. It was inspired by the gopis [cow herd girls]
whose stories are written alongside those of Lord Krishna,
one of the Hindu deities. Te girls would try to impress
Krishna because of their unconditional love for him. Tis
illustration shows Radha, dressed in her gopi skirt, which
fares as she turns with her two clay water pots. Tis
particular painting was a challenge to execute in trying to
capture the light-and-dark tones of the skirt to give it a
three-dimensional efect.
Radha in Motion
Contact:  rajesh_harnarine@hotmail.com
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Actual size: 14 x 18 inches
Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
Actual size: 16 x 20 inches
Rajesh Harnarine
Rajesh Harnarine is a self-taught artist. His passion inspired him to produce
paintings using diferent types of media which began to change as a result
of his renewed interest. Currently perusing his B.A. in Civil Engineering at
the UWI, his aim is to include visual arts into his busy schedules. Harnarine
is known to give particular attention to detail, a skill which he developed at
secondary school. He participated at the Hilton Kids Art Competition and
represented Trinidad and Tobago in a Latin America art competition.
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Saraswati
The Creator
All is well in the universe
Akash Beharry
Akash Beharry is a painter and printmaker. He uses oil paints and his prints
are monotypes and reduction prints on paper. Beharry was born in Pointe-
a-Pierre but grew up in Fyzabad. He received scholarships from Adelphi
University in New York and Te Petroleum Company of Trinidad and
Tobago (PETROTRIN) in 2005. He was also a recipient of the Helen
Baldwin scholarship fund. Beharry earned his B.F.A. from Adelphi University.
He works symbolically, drawing his inspiration from Hinduism which greatly
infuenced him as a child.
Medium: Intaglio prints on paper
Actual size: 12 x 20 inches
Medium: Intaglio print on paper
Actual size: 12 x 16 inches
Medium: Intaglio prints on paper
Actual size: 12 x 16 inches
Tis piece was created
in 2008. It was part
of my exploration of
hands using a variety of
printmaking techniques
with particular emphasis
on their signifcance across
religion, culture, race
and time. Tis study led
me to what was closest
and most familiar to me,
Hindu iconography. Tis
image was inspired by
the many positions of
the club-bearing hand
of Lord Vishnu (Te
Supreme Sustainer), and
their symbolism. In this
Tis piece was done in 2008 as a part of my “Hands”
series. It represents the supreme personality of godhead,
and displays the hands in reverence and humility,
personifed even through the creator himself, Bramha. I
found it quite useful to highlight that even the creator
acknowledges purity and divinity in Hinduism. Te zinc
plate was etched using a high concentration of nitric acid
that was laid onto the plate in layers. Each layer was then
cleaned of, inked and printed. Te process was repeated
until the image was sufciently resolved.
Created in 2008, this
piece is a reduction
print done on rice paper.
Te fnal image was
printed after a series of
layers was strategically
removed from a rubber
block.  Here, goddess
Saraswati, patron of the
arts and creative power
of Bramha, plays the
lute or “veena” in her
left hand, while her
upper left hand holds
a rosary symbolising
the conditioned
consciousness. Hindu
goddesses personify
Contact:  akashbeharry@mail.adelphi.edu
instance, the club or “mukhdar” when held at a 60 degree
angle, indicates that all is well in the universe, as opposed
to an upside-down position, which symbolises destruction
or transformation.
a host of attributes, including compassion, wisdom,
prosperity and even destruction. Tese are avenues through
which battles (within the mind and the world) can be won.
Tey are, to say the least, manifestations of victory through
personifed virtue.
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Te composition is made up of water
lilies found in a pond at Navet Village
in Rio Claro. Te lilies are in full bloom
at six o’clock every morning. It was the
inspiration for this artwork. Te water lily
and the lotus fower are associated with
Mother Lakshmi, the Goddess of Light,
Wisdom and Wealth.
Full Bloom
Te still life drawing depicts an
ofering made to Lord Shiva. Tere is
a lit deya [lamp], a lota [brass jug] with
Shiva-dhaar [libation], a dhatur fower
together with a bael leaf. Tere is also a
hibiscus fower and a bael fruit. In the
composition there is also an incense
stand that is in the shape of an om
symbol.
The Ofering
Contact:  ravita2008@hotmail.com  644-2205  346-0185, 790-3272  Ravita Ramdeen-Gangaram
Medium : Colour Pencils
Actual size : 33 x 17 inches
Medium : Colour Pencils/
Water Colour Pencil
Actual size : 20 x16 inches
Ravita Ramdeen-
Gangaram
From a very early age I knew art was going to be a strong infuence in my
life. My artistic work ranges from drawing, painting, basketry, ceramics, and
presently graphic work. My designs have been featured in the foat design
for San City Steel Symphony for Steel Fest 2013, on furniture, magazines,
booklets, posters and book covers. My present project investigates the graphic
world of designing, and the making of a ceramic wall installation using the
theme of Indian Culture for my Final Year Exhibition in Visual Arts at UWI.
40
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Tere is indeed a strong awareness for the contrast of tone
and a conspicuous depiction of light, whether subdued or
intense. Tis graphic statement is capable of speaking very
clearly to us about our current concerns, and is a joy to
the observer. Additionally, there is an interesting play with
the element of shape and plane as well as the concept of
space. In an attempt to show a variety of surface textures,
two distinct drawing techniques were utilized in this
composition.
Te arrangement of the deity is somewhat schematic. It
invites the viewer to move into a space of speculation and
questions the real and the surreal. Te non-orthodox style
of rendering the subject matter supersedes naturalistic
accuracy.
Vinayaka 2
Vinayaka 3
Contact:  374-6318  richardrampersad22@yahoo.com  Richard-Rampersad/562877307076459
Medium: Pen & India Ink on Water Colour Board
Actual size: 8.5 x 14 inches
Medium: Pen & Ink on Water Colour Paper
Actual size: 8.5 x 14 inches
Richard
Rampersad
Richard Rampersad obtained his B.A. in Visual Arts from the UWI. He is a
nationally renowned artist who specializes in ceramics and fgurative painting.
Many of his clients include distinguished members of society as well as
corporate, academic, religious and cultural personalities. His extraordinary
achievements throughout his artistic career have made him one of the most
infuential fgurative painters in the Contemporary Caribbean Art realm
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Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
“Baraat” (Wedding
Procession)
Lord Ganesh is one of the most commonly known
Hindu avatars. He is the son of Shiva and Parvati and has
an elephantine countenance with a curved trunk and big
ears, and a huge pot-bellied body of a human being. He
is the remover of obstacles. Materials used in this painting
include acrylic, pen and ink, and nail polish.
“Ganesha”
Contact:  sarahchadee15@gmail.com
Medium: Acrylic on canvas
Actual size: 19 x 12 inches
Medium: Mixed Media on canvas
Actual size: 12 x 24 inches
Sarah Chadee
Canadian by birth, Sarah Chadee came to Trinidad and Tobago at a young
age. She is currently perusing a Bachelor’s in Psychology at UWI. Her work is
mainly aimed towards children and education. Chadee’s colouring books on
the preservation of San Fernando history has been endorsed by UNESCO.
Her work has been featured in the Children’s Ward of the Augustus Long
Hospital at Petrotrin and in a section of the Haji Shafk Rahaman Play Park
on the San Fernando Hill.
richly dressed elephant as he is carried to the house of the
dulahin [bride]. Te pre-wedding ceremony, known as
sangeet, features a musician. Te dulahin is being carried
on a traditional doli [small carriage]. Materials used for
this piece include coloured rice, acrylic, pen and ink, and
nail polish.
Tis mixed media piece serves as
a set for the many activities and
traditions involved in a Hindu
wedding. Hindu matrimony is a
spiritual bond between the couple
and their respective families. Tis
painting shows the dulaha [groom]
dressed luxuriously, seated upon a
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44
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
One of the most striking features of Indian classical dance
is the use of hand gestures. Te Indian women in my
painting portray a gathering-in of the whole universe in
the circling of their arms while expressing the rhythm and
harmony of life.
Dance the
Lotus
In this painting, Saraswati, the Hindu Goddess of
Knowledge and Arts, represents the free fow of wisdom
and human consciousness. She has a white lotus in one
hand symbolizing purity and true knowledge. With the
other hand, she plays the music of love and life on a
string instrument called the veena. She is painted in red
to represent the passion and encouragement she evokes
through my love for the creative arts, music and nature.
Garland of
Saraswati
Contact:  shalini.art@gmail.com
Medium: Acrylic
Actual size: 20 x 20 inches
Medium: Acrylic
Actual size: 12 x 16 inches
Shalini Seereeram
I’m a full-time artist who has been creating vibrant imagery of the female
form for a number of years. My style of drawing is informed by continuous
line, intricate patterns, and dramatic contrasts of colour portraying Indo-
Caribbean culture. My passion for painting and drawing embodies techniques
acquired and adapted through graphic design and jewelry making.
46
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
I did this digital drawing of an Indian dancer in my own
version. I used Coral Painter with the charcoal, pastel and
pencil tools. I used the smear tool to smooth it and blend
the colors just like I do with real materials. I never wanted
to simply depict Indian wear; I wanted to show that your
body is a form of art. I exaggerated her braids to illustrate
that Indian women take pride in their hair, especially when
it is long.
One with thy self (Indian girl)
Tis bird is from the Wild Fowl Trust. I used oil pastels
on A2 size paper. Tis took me exactly an hour to
complete and framing took 30 minutes. I love animals a
lot, and this bird amazed me with its simple beauty, and
also appealed to my love for blue. Etching techniques were
used on its neck and feathers, and also the background.
Peacock Pride
Contact:  shannonyipying@yahoo.com
Medium: Oil pastels on paper
Medium: Digital drawing
Shannon Yip Yang
aka Alexis Cortez
Art has played a huge role in my life since I was a toddler. At the age of fve,
an accident occurred in which my left eye was impaled by a scissors, causing
undeveloped vision. Tis never hindered my passion for art. My gift grew
stronger with my constant determination and practice with each passing year.
I love anime and I want to bring to life my imagination in 3D, which is one
of my long-term goals
Over 30 years of Service.
48
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Tis portrayal shows a Hindu bride eagerly awaiting the
arrival of the baraat [bridegroom’s wedding procession].
Te dulahin [bride] is elaborately bejewelled in her bridal
sari [dress]. Te composition portrays a dulahin in a
mood refective of the feelings and emotions which she
experiences as she prepares to leave the safety of her father’s
house to venture at her in-laws’ together with her husband.
Tis piece was created using a black-ink pen. Te drawing
techniques of hatching and cross hatching were explored in
an attempt to achieve form, tone, texture and the illusion
of three-dimensionality.
Dulahin
Tis is a digital drawing of a dulaha [groom]. I used
a limited colour palette of red and yellow in order to
achieve the overall desired visual efect. Te elements
of point, line, shape, colour, texture and pattern were
the building blocks for the construction of this portrait.
Tere is also an interesting play with the concept of
fgure ground reversal in the piece which contributes to
an airy feel.
Dulaha
Contact:  s.mehandibaig1@yahoo.com
Medium: Digital illustration
Actual size: 11 x 17 inches
Medium: Pen
Actual size: 8.5 x 14 inches
Shelly
Mehandibaig
Born in 1989, Shelly Mehandibaig lives Rio Claro. Her passion for art started
at a very young age. Since that time, her artistic talents and skills have
developed and she is now experienced in both the felds of fne art and design.
She is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in Visual Arts at the University
of the West Indies.
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• 3/8, 3/4, 1 1/2 White Decostone Aggregate
• 3/8, 3/4, 1 1/2 Non- Concreting Aggregate and Concreting Aggregate
• White Sharp Sand
• Silt Sand
• Agriculture Limestone (Ag Lime)
• Crusher Run (Limestone)
50
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Tis rangoli was designed along a fight of stairs. In creating abstract
designs like these, one has to remember to maintain balance and
avoid an asymmetrical or crooked design. Always aim to have an
even width and distribution of the colours throughout. Te method
used to perfect this piece was the use of dots. Dots enhanced the
beauty and size of the design. Tis technique is also used in mehndi
[body art]. I have learnt and gained a lot of experience from Hindu
groups such as Swayamsevak Sangh and the Hindu Students’
Council. Tese groups introduced me to the use of sawdust to create
rangolis.
Abstract rangoli
To create a perfect circle, I used a technique akin to the compass
found in a geometry set. I frst created a central point by implanting
one end of a string frmly into the ground and extended it
outwards. On the other end of the string, I tied a piece of chalk
to it. Tis chalk was used to draw the circle. Te length of the
string determined the radius of the circle. By adjusting the length
of the string, one can either make bigger or smaller circles inside
and outside of each other. Tese featured designs were done with
sawdust. It is equally versatile, economical and environmentally-
friendly alternative to food items.
Circular rangoli
Contact:  shivanalalla@hotmail.com
M
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S
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Shivana
Lalla
“Namaste.” My name is Shivana Lalla. I am 21 years of age and currently
pursuing the Bachelor of Laws at the UWI, Cave Hill, Barbados. Creating
rangoli [Indian decoration and patterns] designs reveal another dimension of
my personality, expresses my love for culture. I am eager to learn, interact and
experiment as well as to showcase my talent.
52
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
Te idea to capture the beauty and brilliance of the sunset at the Temple-
in-the-sea was derived from the book Poring Light-Layering Transparent
Watercolor by J.H. Grastorf. First, the paper was taped to a hard board, a
rough sketch was drawn, and then the layer of masking fuid was applied.
Once dried, the frst colour was poured and tilted over a basin to let the
colour spread, then run of. After the painting was completely dried, I
removed the frst coat of masking fuid, and a second coat was applied and
left to dry. Ten the second colour was poured, and the same process for the
third colour. Once dried, a black Prisma Colour ink pens of various nib sizes
was used to fnish the painting.
The Temple-in-the-sea
“A Dance of Colours” was inspired by a dance performed by a group of
students at my daughter’s primary school during Divali celebrations. Te
painting depicts a twirling dancer. A rough sketch was drawn, the paper was
saturated and colour was applied. Gold acrylic paint was used to decorate the
piping of the dancer’s top, the band of her skirt, her bracelets and the border.
Once the painting was completely dry, the fnal details of the dancer and the
border were drawn with a black Prisma Colour pen.
A Dance of Colours
Medium: Mixed
Actual size: 12.25 x 26.25 inches
Medium: Mixed
Actual size: 24 x12 inches
Rebecca Foster
Trinidadian artist Rebecca Foster is a member of the Art Society of Trinidad
and Tobago and has participated in numerous annual group exhibitions.
An experiment with line, form and colour bloomed into a vibrant Trinidad
Carnival series that has helped defne Rebecca’s artistic style and revamp her
interest in the water colour medium. Rebecca’s most recent showing was
a resounding success: a group exhibition named “Four” held at Y Gallery,
Trinidad in May 2012.
Contact:  bexfoster@mac.com  www.bexfoster.com  www.facebook.com/rebeccafoster.art
AN AGENCY OF THE MINISTRY OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT
54
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
A Hindu wedding is a sacred ceremony that is steeped
in tradition. Te stories behind the various processions
are at once intriguing and captivating. Te colourful and
the ornate play key roles in the celebration of the sacred
union. In the frst image, the dulahin’s [bride] mother and
female relatives welcome the dulaha [groom] by showering
fowers and rice around him. Aarti [waving of lights] is
also performed. Another welcoming ritual called parchay is
done.
Parchay
Te fnal image in the series is a close-up of the ritual
of sindur daan. In this ritual, the dulaha places sindur
[vermillion] on the parted hair of the dulahin under a
cloth covering.
Te second piece in this
wedding series depicts the frst
public appearance of the bride.
She is adorned in a yellow sari
and is escorted by her mother.
Ten the dulaha and dulahin
are joined together with fabric
rope. Tey circle the sacred fre
seven times. Te fnal phase in
this panel shows the mangal
sutra daan ceremony in which
the dulaha places a mangal sutra
[marital necklace] around the
dulahin’s neck.
Sindur daan
Mangal sutra daan
Contact:  sharon.vidale@gmail.com
Medium: Acrylic on hard acrylic board
Actual size: 18 x 36 inches
Medium: Acrylic on hard acrylic board
Actual size: 18 x 36 inches
Medium: Acrylic on hard acrylic board
Actual size: 18 x 36 inches
Sharon
Vidale
Te inspiration for these pieces was the clean lines of classical Indian art. Te
drawings are deliberately simplifed and only the key characters were depicted
for each ritual. I am drawn to line and prefer to use line as the primary form
of expression. Rich vibrant colours with intense values were used as a source
of expression of passionate emotions.
Chakra Publishing House Ltd.
10 Swami Avenue, Don Miguel Road, San Juan, Trinidad and Tobago, West Indies
Tel: (868) 674-6008. Tel/fax: (868) 675-7707, E-mail: dmahabir@gmail.com; mahab@tstt.net.tt
http://chakrapub.wordpress.com/
Available
at Chakra
and major
bookstores
1992. Reprinted 2001, New edition 2009.
xx + 120 pp. 5¼ x 8¼ inches. Paperback.
ISBN 976-8012-75-7
TT$100. or US$25.
(includes handling, registration and local/foreign postage)
This cookbook represents a comprehensive collection of
over 70 traditional vegetarian recipes. They have been
handed down by indentured immigrants from India by
word-of-mouth and practical example for over four
generations. From delightful snacks to dinner-party
specials – each recipe has been kitchen-tested and,
therefore, meets a high standard of accuracy.
Some of the dishes are beautifully illustrated in
color to tempt your appetite.
Kumar Mahabir Caribbean East Indian Recipes
56
Indo-Caribbean Divali Publication Ltd. Divali Magazine 2014 Visual Arts on Indian Cultural Heritage
In “Hosay 1”, the artist uses his signature cubist
approach to convey the energy and excitement
of this festive afair. Hosay is a religious event
observed mainly by the Shia sect of Islam. Very
elaborately decorated models of mosques are
made of paper, beads, fabric and tinsel. Te
models, called “tadjahs”, are carried through
the streets to the accompaniment of rhythmic
tassa. Te artist utilizes his colour palette fully,
mixing both harmonious and contrasting colour
schemes within this one picture plane. Such
juxta-positioning of both ideas could be read as
narratives of the union of man and god, or is it the
fusion of party and prayer?
Hosay 1
Te simplicity resonated in “Hosay 2”
really invites us to closely examine the
composition with respect to the concept
of beginnings and endings. Te viewer
may wonder whether the piece depicts the
start of the festival or the end, where the
participants and followers are minimal.
Te inclusion of the green hedge to the
top right tastefully contrasts with the red
tassa player on the foreground, and draws
upon ideas associated with man existing in
harmony with nature. Te strategic use of
complementary colours echoes the drama
and hype associated with this most glorious
celebration.
Hosay 2
Contact:  332-6358  kendersonnoray@yahoo.com
Medium: Oil on Canvas
Actual size: 30 x 35 centimetres
Medium: Oil on Canvas
Actual size: 39 x 48 centimetres
Kenderson Noray
Twenty nine year-old Kenderson Noray loved to draw at an early age. Growing
up in the subdued hills of Paramin, Noray was heavily infuenced by the
laid-back nature of the people and the vibrant colours of his environment.
At eighteen, he entered a few village art competitions, in which he won all
the prizes. Landscapes and seascapes are a major theme in his work, maybe
because he is so consumed by them. Presently, his work can be seen at well-
known galleries and corporate establishments in Trinidad and Tobago.
Head Office: 139-141 Abercromby Street, Port of Spain. 624-2688
Branch Office (South): 15B Carib Street, San Fernando. 657-2688
Branch Office (Tobago): 19 Dutch Fort, Lal Building, Scarborough. 635-2688
www.cott.org.tt
May every aspect of your life become as scintillating as the lights of the deya
May you heart and life be filled with happiness, joy and peace
Shubh Divali
CLASSIC TILES LIMITED.
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Satnarayan (“Sat”) Maharaj is a
religious and cultural leader
in Trinidad and Tobago. He is
the Secretary General of the
Sanatan Dharma Maha
Sabha, the major Hindu
organisation in the multi-ethnic
society. As much as he is criticised, Sat is also
hailed as a champion of Hindus and Indians
in the country, and is also described as the
most influential and longest-serving Hindu
spokesman outside of India.
He struggled tirelessly to change the symbol
of the nation’s highest award from the Trinity
Cross to the Order of the Republic of
Trinidad and Tobago. In the High Court, the
Court of Appeal and the Privy Council, Sat
fought against discrimination when the Maha
Sabha was denied a radio broadcast licence
by the then Government. He has contributed
significantly to national development in the
fields of religion, education and culture.
The author, Dr. Kumar Mahabir, is an Assistant
Professor in the Centre for Education Programmes
at the University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT).
Available at major bookstores, and at Maha Sabha
schools and temples in Trinidad, and at Radio
Jaagriti, Corner Pasea Main Road Ext. and
Churchill Roosevelt Highway, Tunapuna.
Order copies by contacting: 645-2745, 498-8657, 663-2250, 663-8743, 756-4961, 674-6008,
vkmaharaj@live.com, dmahabir@gmail.com
TT$100. Paperback.
2014. xii + 250 pages.
8¾ x 5½ inches Paperback
ISBN 978-976-8249-70-8
Hindu Civil Rights Leader of Trinidad and Tobago
Sat Maharaj
an authorised biography by Dr. Kumar Mahabir
I ... wish to congratulate Sat Maharaj for the
herculean efforts he has made to improve the
educational standards of his people, and his
determination to ensure that his people receive their
rightful share of the national pie. When the history of
the second half of the twentieth century is written, I
am certain he will take his place as one of the more
outstanding Trinbagonians of the era.
Dr. Selwyn R. Cudjoe, Professor of Africana Studies at
Wellesley College, Massachusetts, USA