54" A Staggering Triumph of Chola Artistic Tradition In Panchaloha Bronze | Made In Swamimalai, Tamil Nadu, India (Shipped by Sea)

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The art historian Partha Mitter, when writing his oft-cited masterpiece ‘Much Maligned Monsters,’ explained that European and Victorian sensibilities wrongly assumed the significance of Indian art – when they came across depictions of four or eight-armed gods and goddesses, often in striking and fierce moments vanquishing demons, Westerners thought that we had an underdeveloped sense of reality, and that our ‘savage’ livelihood needed to be civilised according to their tastes and aesthetics. Imagine their fright then if they would have come across this imaginative visualisation from the ’sthapati’ from Swamimalai!

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Item Code: PHC439
Specifications:
Panchaloha Bronze
Height: 54 inch
Width: 24 inch
Depth: 36 inch
Weight: 450 kg
Handmade
Handmade
Free delivery
Free delivery
Fully insured
Fully insured
Shipped to 153 countries
Shipped to 153 countries
More than 1M+ customers worldwide
More than 1M+ customers worldwide

However, we can realise his artistic and religious genius in presenting to us what is perhaps the most unique iteration of Ganesha one would come across. Ganesha, as our beloved lord of auspicious starts and the remover of obstacles, is usually visualised in thirty-two forms as listed in the Ganesha-centric scripture Mudgala Purana. These forms are always individually realised, as is the case with the various sculptural representations present at the temples of Nanjangud and Chamarajanagar. Moreover, Ganesha is also associated with 108 names; a number which is deeply auspicious for Hindu religion. The artisan, therefore, has provided us with a hugely impressive and massive fifty-four-inch Ganesha – embodying all his 108 names and characteristics in a single figure.


The totality of this sculptural masterpiece is a triad of three figures standing proud on an elaborately raised pedestal. The two flanking pot-bellied figures carry a basket of twenty-one ‘modak,’ a sweet famously favoured by Ganesha as ‘Modarpriya,’ and a large mango. The mango alludes to the instance when Sage Narada mischievously offered a single mango between Ganesha and Kartikeya and challenged that whoever would circle the world three times and come first would get to enjoy the fruit. While Kartikeya quickly hopped on his ‘vahana,’ the peacock, Ganesha respectfully took three rounds of Shiva and Parvati, proclaiming them to be his world, and ultimately won the fruit.


The central figure of the divine zoo-anthropomorphic, elephant-headed god exquisitely staggers belief and minutely presents every single attribute associated to Ganesha. Standing on a double-lotus pedestal, he adorns an elaborate, multi-tiered ‘mukuta’ along with distinct jewellery and tassels spread over his shoulders, belly, and feet. A large ‘prabhamandala’ is attached to the back of the ‘mukuta,’ symbolising his divine halo. A diaphanous ‘dhoti’ covers his thighs. Ganesha’s iconic trunk is curled around a jar of ‘amrita’ or elixir, the sweet nectar of the gods that was procured during the ‘samudra manthan’ – the great churning of the ocean. Moreover, the fact that Ganesha’s trunk is curled to the left is also symbolic, for that represents the blissful and peaceful qualities of the Moon and signifies material gains and prosperity. Another element of the trunk is the absence of one of his tooth/tusks – an episode from when he purposely broke it to use as a writing instrument for completing the manuscript of the Mahabharata that sage Vyasa was narrating (the ‘Ekdanta’ aspect of Ganesha has various legends associated with it).


Ganesha’s two prominent forehands are in the two gestures of ‘abhaya’ and ‘varada’ – the right hand dispels fear from the hearts of the devout and the left-hand grants boons to the righteous. Two distinct groups of hands can be ascertained behind Ganesha. The inside circle of hands does not carry any attribute, but their gesture of being in the ‘kartarimukha’ – that which holds an attribute between the index and the middle figure – acknowledges their symbolic idea. The outer rim of hands carries his attributes, and these include the goad, mace, trident, lotus, noose, flag, sword, musical drum, war discus, conch, bow and arrow, others. 


ABOUT HINDU GOD GANESHA


There is much to Lord Ganesha that charm the senses and the soul. Exotic India's lifelike Ganesha sculptures bring it out to perfection. The Hindu boy-god is widely adored for His innocence and His generosity with divine blessings. His childlike appeal lies primarily in His love of laddoos, a quintessential Indian sweetmeat, without which His iconography remains incomplete. He is usually portrayed as Chaturbhuja Ganesha (Sanskrit for 'four-armed'). In one hand He holds a miniature goad or a noose, a weapon He wields over the adharmi; in another His only tusk, with which He wrote the Mahabharata; in another He holds a pot of laddoos; while the palm of His final hand is turned erect and outward in the gesture of blessing.



Exotic India has a vast collection of not just the four-armed Ganesha, but also the sixteen-armed and the dancing Ganesha. There are many sides to His personality, each to bring out a different facet of the devotee's spiritual makeup. The son of Ma Durga, Ganeshaji is a ferocious warrior and boasts of invincible skill that conquers the adharmi. With Shiv ji His father, He breaks into a divine dance routine that becomes His child's limbs and demeanour. An important aspect of Ganesha ji is the trident mark on His forehead, indicative of His father in Whose iconography the trident is indispensable. In some portrayals, He sits with His plump form hunched up over the Mahabharata, the very picture of singular focus.



From exquisite, richly inlaid brass pieces to endemic South Indian bronzes, our Ganesha  murtis come in diverse forms and sizes. Whether you need a resplendent murti for your altar or a small work of art for your website, Exotic India's painstakingly sourced collection will not disappoint you.

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.


How are Bronze statues made?

Bronze statues and sculptures are known for their exquisite beauty and the divinity that they emit all around the space. Bronze is considered an excellent metal alloy, composed primarily of copper and tin. Many properties make it suitable for sculpting even the most intricate and complex structures. There was a period in history, known as the "Bronze Age", in which most sculptors preferred to work with Bronze as it was considered the hardest metal. Bronze is especially appreciated for its durability, ductility, and corrosion-resistance properties. India is especially known for its elegant workmanship of skills working with Bronze. The artisans of a town named Swamimalai in South India have been following a tradition of bronze murti making for ages. They use a special material known as Panchaloha bronze to make fascinating icons of Hindu Gods and Goddesses.

All of us are allured by the beauty of bronze statues and sculptures but there goes a tough hand in casting those masterpieces with little or no imperfections. Since it is an extremely elaborate process, a sculptor needs to be highly skilled in making bronze antiques. The most common technique for casting bronze sculptures that has been followed since ancient times is the “Lost-wax” process which involves many steps:

1. Clay model making

The making of a bronze statue or sculpture starts with preparing a full-sized clay (usually Plasticine) model of the sculpture. This allows the artist to have an idea about the overall shape and form of the desired sculpture before working with bronze, a much more expensive and difficult-to-work-with material.
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2. Mould making

Once the clay model is ready, a mould of the original sculpture is made. This is done by carefully covering the clay model with plaster strips. This step is carried out in such a way that no air bubbles are formed. It takes up to 24 hours for the plaster to dry. Once dried, the plaster is then gently removed from the clay model. The removal happens easily because the inner mould is usually made of materials such as polyurethane rubber or silicone.

3. Wax filling and removal

In this step, molten bronze or wax is poured or filled into the mould in such a way that it gets even into the finest details. The mould is then turned upside down and left to cool and harden. When the wax has hardened, it is removed from the mould.
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4. Chasing

Chasing is the process in which the artist refines the surface of the bronze statue using various tools to achieve fine details. This smoothens the surface and gives the statue a finished look. If some parts of the statue were moulded separately, they are now heated and attached.
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5. Applying a patina

Bronze sculptures are known for their unique look or sheen on the surface. This may take several years to achieve naturally. Applying patina to bronze sculptures is an important step to make them appear attractive.
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Working with clay, plaster mould, and molten wax can be messy and therefore sculptors wear old clothes and remain careful. The entire process of making a bronze statue takes several months to complete. Bronze sculptures last for many centuries because of the high durability of the material. Many centuries down the line, these sculptures continue to be appreciated for their majestic beauty.
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