An imposing Nataraja like this would be a tasteful addition to the home of any devotee. From the stature (27” tall) to the metallic colour finish, there is none to match such a work of art. This peerless dancing figure has been handpicked from Swamimalai, the modern-day capital of South India’s traditional bronze sculpture. This murti, like most of the murtis in our exclusive bronze section, is actually made from panchaloha.
Panchaloha is a portmanteau of the words ‘pancha’, which means five, and ‘loha’, which means iron. It is a unique medium that comprises five different types of iron-based alloys and is responsible for the one-of-a-kind colour finish. It adds to the sublime personality of the Nataraja, the form of the all-annihilating Shiva that wields destruction through His tandava or cosmic dance. The finish achieved through madhuchista vidhana (scriptural term; commonly known as the lost-wax method) is proof of the artisan’s skill and devotion to the work.
The formidable iconography of Nataraja is intact in this composition. The strong legs of Shiva pressing down on the back of avidya-roopi Apasmara (the personification of ignorance), luscious locks flying about His face from the momentum of His tandava, and the ring of flames that frames His perfect form.
WHAT IS PANCHALOHA BRONZE AND HOW TO TAKE CARE OF IT ?
Bronze is a metal alloy that has the primary composition of Copper and Tin. There is also an addition of other metals such as Manganese, Aluminium, Nickel, and some non-metals such as Phosphorus. This composition of several metals and non-metals makes Bronze an extremely durable and strong metal alloy. It is for this reason that Bronze is extensively used for casting sculptures and statues. Since Bronze has a low melting point, it usually tends to fill in the finest details of a mould and when it cools down, it shrinks a little that makes it easier to separate from the mould.
" If you happen to have a bronze statue, simply use a cotton cloth with some coconut oil or any other natural oil to clean the statue. "
A village named Swamimalai in South India is especially known for exceptionally well-crafted Bronze icons of Hindu Gods and Goddesses. The skilled artisans of this place use Panchaloha Bronze for casting the icons. Panchaloha Bronze is made of five metals; Copper, Zinc, Lead, and small quantities of Gold and Silver. Zinc gives a golden hue to the finished figure and Lead makes the alloy softer for the easy application of a chisel and hammer. The common technique for producing these statues and sculptures is the “Lost-wax” method. Because of the high durability of bronze sculptures and statues, less maintenance is required, and can still last up to many decades.
Exotic India takes great pride in its collection of hand-picked Panchaloha Statues. You will find the murtis of Gods (Krishna, Hanuman, Narasimha, Ganesha, Nataraja, and Kartikeya) and Goddesses (Saraswati, Lakshmi, Durga, and Parvati), and Buddha statues. You can also buy Ritual paraphernalia (Wicks lamp, Puja Kalash, Cymbals, and Puja Flag) on the website. All these statues and items have been made with a lot of care and attention, giving them a flawless finish. Their fine carving detail represents the rich tradition of India.
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