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"Bommala koluvu", arranging idols and dolls

Rani Devalla, Keeping tradition alive, September 29, 2017: The Hindu

Idols and dolls being arranged in an array of steps at a house in Berhampur; Rani Devalla, Keeping tradition alive, September 29, 2017: The Hindu

‘Bommala koluvu’ a special attraction during Navaratri

The best part of Navaratri for many is sorting out figurines, dolls and idols of deities collected over the years and arranging an intricate bommala koluvu.

Those who follow the tradition of featuring koluvu try to unlock their creativity while putting up their collections on the shelves.

A nondescript village, a wedding set, wooden kitchen sets, a couple sitting at a kirana store displaying assorted pulses in tiny containers, an old well that continues to work with a pulley system and the famous Dasavataram of Lord Vishnu are some of the figurines that keep reappearing in several households.

A beautiful collection of dolls, idols and miniature models were put up at G. Shanti’s house located in Nowroji Road. New themes form an integral feature of her koluvu every year.

“This time, miniature models of snow-capped peaks of Swiss Alps and the Broken Chair monumental sculpture in wood with a broken leg have been kept along with the traditional sets of figurines,” said the homemaker.

Displaying koluvu has been a part of H. Maheswari Devi’s Dasara celebrations for the past seven decades. Her house at Maharanipeta has been drawing a steady stream of visitors for the past few days. “From the chapters of the Mahabharata to the Ramayana and a few pages of mythological stories, the objective to display the collection is to strengthen our culture and tradition,” said the 95-year-old retired professor of Andhra University.

New additions

It took more than a week for G.S.V.S. Girija, an entrepreneur, to put up an impressive exhibition of 2,500 dolls and figurines made of terracotta, porcelain, brass, wood and assorted metal at her residence located in Rajendra Nagar.

“These are some of my prized possessions collected from various parts of the world. This apart, a set of ‘Nava Durga’ and ‘Rama Pattabhishekam’ are the new additions that dot the shelves this year,” said Ms. Girija.

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