Signed 'Sakti Burman' (lower right)
Private collection, Dubai
Much like his influences from India and France, Sakti Burman organizes the narrative of his works from both the grand mythologies of the world and from personal myth. Drawing instinctively from varied religious traditions and folklores as much as he borrows from his everyday encounters, his frames are graced by families and friends often seen accompanying gods, nymphs, heroes and celestial emissaries into ethereal fantasy and reverie.
Sakti's fascination with demotic imageries is apparent in the current lot. Employing the Kalighat ethos, he humanized Lord Krishna in the picture. Here, he presented the god as a child dancing with the cow as his mount. Lord Krishna as dancer and flautist is a recurrent object of painterly devotion for Burman. To one side stands a human father carrying his child and on the other side is a flautist. Seated below is an accordion player. Both musicians are playing music to Krishna's dancing; blurring the boundaries between the world of mortals and gods. The picture also includes Sakti's recurring characters like harlequin and other mythical creatures joining in a blissful coexistence. Sakti conceives paradoxical imagery depicting familial relationships, celestial and terrestrial figures of dreams and perceived reality; tying them cohesively in a powerful narrative.
"Child and Supreme God, serenader of women and killer demons, the divine flautist is often at the centre of a dance of other figures from Burman's ongoing fantasia: sometimes, the peacock; at other times, a chorus of adolescents; on occasion, a centaur-like figure who prances yet remains melancholy, keeps the beat of the dance yet retains the detachment of the observer. Perhaps that centaur-like figure is, once again, the artist as chronicler and archivist of human dispositions, marking the rhythm of point and counterpoint." (Ranjit Hoskote, Sakti Burman: In The Presence Of Another Sky, Art Musings, India, pg. 245)