GOND ART. ARTIST IS MAYANK SHYAM. A massive monstrous face with a large glaring eye and a shark-like mouth with razor sharp teeth and lolling out tongue are seen in stark profile. Such characteristics conform to a set of archetypal images of confrontation known from other parts of the world, from the Greek Medusa to the Babylonian Humbaba. The tentacles of the creature wind themselves around a densely covered tree, so closely intertwined as to be almost indistinguishable from it. The image remarkably captures the unearthly roar of a tiger in a thick forest, such that even the ground quakes and trembles. There are several stories among the Gonds about tigers of fearful size and appearance hidden away in trees to hunt their prey, holding villages to tyranny, raiding cattle, and ambushing unsuspecting travellers. This predator par excellence often assumes wildly supernatural proportions in these tales, and is sometimes also associated with the destructive force of Shiva. If the tiger has been a feared predator, it has also served as a revered guardian for the Gonds, being propitiated and worshipped for their protection against the worst forms of danger.