Mumbai : Hotel Marriott removes Anti-Hindu M.F. Husain’s Ganesha

Bhadrapad Krushnapaksha 5, Kaliyug Varsha 5116

Denigrated painting of Lord Ganesha by M F Hussain

Celebrated artist M F Husain seems to be facing censorship even after his death. A luxury hotel in Mumbai has removed his painting of Lord Ganesha from its lobby after some guests apparently raised an objection as they found it ‘offensive.’

The incident, which occurred last month, came to light when film-maker and critic Khalid Mohamed referred to it in a blog on Monday. The painting was part of a collection on display in the lobby of Hotel Marriott which is hosting ‘Manifestations X1’ in collaboration with the Delhi Art Gallery (DAG).

In August, the Ganesha painting by Mr. Husain occupied “pride of place in the lobby besides being printed on the cover for the catalogue dedicated to the show,” said Mr. Mohamed.

However, he later found that while the exhibition brochure had the painting on its cover, the canvas itself was nowhere to be seen. “The nature of the objections to the Lord Ganesha canvas in the Marriott lobby aren't forthcoming. It would seem that before the objections escalated, the painting was obliterated from the public eye,” he wrote. Talking to The Hindu Mr. Mohamed said the image of Lord Ganesha with a woman in the background was “not offensive at all.”

Hotel JW Marriot refused to comment. Without specifying any reasons, a hotel spokesperson said “the painting was replaced with another M.F. Husain painting,” a tribal artwork.

The Ganesha painting, an untitled and undated work from the 80s or 90s, was removed as a measure of “caution” and to see that no sentiments were hurt, said Kishore Singh, DAG, head publication and exhibition.

Mr. Singh said the painting was in public space and the organizers were in “no position to organize its security.”

The DAG was “sensitive” to its partnership with the hotel,” he said. However, Mr. Singh, added: “We have a long history of standing by artists, including Mr. Husain, and the painting will continue to feature in our future exhibitions.”

Source : The Hindu

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