India is a land of diversities. From the existence of multiple cultures to several different ways of celebration, it is home to the most dynamic way of expressing nature’s vibrancy. Each region and state has its own major and significant festival. Spanning for a few days during a particular time of the year, it sets the mood high and enthusiasm soaring among all the age groups. Janmashtami in Gujarat, Pongal in Tamil Nadu, Lohri in Himachal Pradesh, likewise Bengal too has it own major festival called the Durga Puja or Durgotsav.
It is celebrated during the the days of Navratri which usually falls in the month of September- October. As the name suggests, it is observed over nine days. These are the nine magical days when each street of Bengal is light up with colourful lights and pandals (temporary temple like structures) that house the beautiful idols of deities. It is also a fact that many people in the run up to this occasion renovate their furniture by employing interior decorators in Kolkata.
Run up to the Puja Pandal construction
A lot of planning and hard work goes into conceptualising the design and construction of these pandals. Every minute detail of the facade and the Puja interior design of pandals is given due attention. The result can be seen in the structures carved out of genius minds that radiate a magnificent tale of designing and architectural brilliance. The members of the committee feel exactly like they are working on their home interior decoration.
No bengali can hide their excitement for this hour of the year. From shopping to pampering themselves with delicious bengali food, all these activities based around the mandatory event of pandal hopping for the entire night. From Bara Bazar to Esplanade, the roads are entirely packed. Some devotees of Maa Durga even house her idol at their houses and worship her with all their hearts for the nine days. There are many artists and associations that tie up with puja interior designing company that lend their services to provide full solutions to decorating their homes and sourcing the customized idols.
Bengalis from every corner of the world join their family at this time of the year and if not, at least they wish for the same. Durga Puja is not just a Puja or a festival, it is a tradition that people have been following since ages and will continue to follow. It is incredible to see how for months people have been involved in creating huge and creative pandals. Each of them is worth hopping for and with idols so great as if the Goddess has herself taken the form of the soil. The crowd starts gathering from the sixth day called shrashti i.e 15th of oct this year and end on dhashmi i.e on 19th, that is the tenth day of the festival.
Counted as one of the best and upcoming modern interior decorators in Kolkata, we went on a spree to determine some of the best pandals of this year. While every pandal is mesmerising and totally worth having an eye, here are some of the Best pandals to visit in Durga Puja 2018.
Sreebhumi Sporting Club
Sreebhumi Sporting Club’s Durga Puja is well-known for its uniqueness and grandness. The Sreebhumi Sporting Club has come up with the Padmavat theme this year, which is somehow similar to the Bahubali theme of last year. They have replicated the Chittor Fort of Rana Ratan Singh. Fibre and thermocol has been used to project the royal imagery of the fort. Paintings and mirror work has been used to create an imposing aura – a splendid characteristic of Rajasthan palaces. It is amusing to see and learn from the artists how different facets of our culture has been utilised to create a spectacle. They have beautifully incorporated the diverse architectural structure of North and South India. And not to forget the Padmavat like ornaments used in showcasing the idols of the Goddess which are made of actual gold!
Chetla Club Durga Puja
The grand and intrinsic havelis of Rajasthan are one of the best pieces of architectural brilliance present in India. To recreate those impactful visuals one has to be very creative and innovative. Incredibly brought to envisage this aspect, the beauty of The Sheesh Mahal in Rajasthan has been used by the Durga Puja committee of Chetla club. It is one of the best pandals to visit in Durga Puja 2018. Its beauty is breathtaking and one can not lay his eyes of. It. Each portion of the pandal is glamorous and sparkling like a Diamond. The way mirror and lights have been used to replicate the aesthetics of the Sheesh Mahal is really fascinating. It was inspiring to see how the way reflections was rendering a grand appeal to the interiors of the pandal. Something, we can definitely ponder on in the future.
Ahiritola Sarbojanin Durgotsab Samity
We can always differentiate from the exteriors of a pandal, whether it can be expected to be grand or simple. But this year Ahiritola Sarbojanin Durgotsab Samity made it almost impossible to discriminate. They created a Rajbari which is more than real both from the inside as well as the outside. Walking down the streets of Murshidabad, one would find many such Rajbaris or palaces that radiate elegance from its every corner. The Rajbari interior and exteriors are so brilliantly done that until and unless told one cannot count it as a Puja Pandal. The cement and brick texture perfectly exhibits the lost and ancient condition of our Rajbaris, located in the suburbs of the small towns. The color texture and lighting used inside of the pandal makes it hard to discriminate between the permanence and temporary nature of the structure. With an unmatchable perfection the architects have been able to imitate the heritage at a very small budget.
Like every year this club thrives its best to create something very eccentric. Its beauty is always idiosyncratic and the thought behind this years theme is remarkable. They have used Jute sticks in the construction of the pandal. Not just that, to add on to their innovation they have placed children on the Garland that is worn by Maa Durga. Both the ideas are extremely inspiring and this is a must watch pandal for all the puja hoppers. One can see the creativity and brilliance of the artist in constructing the objects and details with which the use of something as simple as jute sticks.
Samaj Sebi Sangha
While millions of devotees enjoy their puja, there are billions who don’t. This year the Samaj Sebi Sangha has come up with this extraordinary thought of Eye Donation through it’s pandal. Though an idea sounds wonderful it is actually difficult to implement it. Here you can see a perfect example of brilliant execution, the dream of every interior designing company! Their theme this time is Sparsh. The members have tried to portray how the blind perceives the puja through their other senses. One should not miss the Hand donating the eye and the artwork which shows how the eye of the blind is locked and the donated eyes are the key to open them. They have made interior designers and also the artists realise that it is not always the use of peculiar objects that makes the interior heart touching. Something as simple as paint can be used to relay a strong theme.
Hindustan Park Sarbojanin Durgotsab Committee
The Hindustan Park Puja has come up with the theme – Life Cycle. One can see that the life of a person starts with a small strand of DNA. Then the cycle of evolution has been presented with a pinch of playfulness. There is a Printer next to the DNA which depicts that God has already written what is in store for each of us. This is followed by a Staircase which leads us to the Keys of Success and lastly we all leave this World, which has been depicted by the Flying Angels. It’s a beautifully done Puja pandal with great interior designing and concepts.
We have been swept off our feet
It is mind boggling to see how creativity has expressed itself in so many different forms. From jute sticks to tea bags, from DNA to Eyes, there is so much of vibrancy present in this year’s Durga Puja pandals. This year’s puja interior design has been one of the best. Even the representatives of China, USA, United Kingdom have taken this opportunity to take to pandal hopping and explore the palpable beauty of pandals.
We at Blue Masons appreciate the wonderful work of architecture and designing done by the artists and sculptors in crafting such dazzling structures. As an interior designing company we would like to draw inspiration from their work and learn from their craving for art and architecture. Their work has really motivated us and made us think of newer possibilities that can be utilised in home interior decoration. Our team looks forward to some wonderful puja interior design next year too!