Wednesday, December 23, 2009
UNIOUE METAL SCULPTURES
The origin of metallurgy in India dates back to 2000 BCE. Archaeological excavations show that the Indians produced metallic weapons, tools and utensils more than 4500 years ago. And the excavations from harappan sites reveal metal sculptures of dancers. Thus, the art of casting murtis and statues was developed in ancient India.
The 2.25 metre high metal murti of Buddha, presently on display at a museum in Birminghan, UK, was made two millennia ago in India.
More recently, metal murtis of very high quality were made between the 10th and 13th century during the chola dynasty. A sample of this is the metal murti of Shri Ramchandrajin displayed at a museum in Chennai. The famous murti of Natraj is also
A gift from the chola period. Many murtis of the jain religion and Shaiv Sampradays are also impressive and form a part of the metallurgy tradition of India.
Bhagwan Swaminarayan consecrated the first metal murti of Shri Harikrishna Maharaj in 1826 and from then onwards, one finds the murti of Harikrishana Maharaj in the Swaminarayan Mandirs.
Swaminarayan Akshardham has continued this tradition of installing metal murtis and statues. 72 metal murtis, 108 gaumukhs(cow’s faces)and three 180ft long relief work panels on aspect of the life of Bhagwan Swaminarayan are displayed in various parts of the Swaminarayan Akshardham complex. Some special features of the metal murtis and statues;
The 27-ft tall murti of Shri Neelkanth Varniradiates vibrations of peace and determination. It weight 4500kg.
The consecrated 11-ft high gold –plated murti of Bhagwan Swaminarayan weighs 2600kg. Also, in the sanctorum of Akshardham are the consecrated murtis of the Guru parampara, namely, Akshardham Gunatitanand Swami, Bhagatji Maharaj, Shastriji Maharaj, Yogiji Maharaj and Pramukh Swami Maharaj.