Walter Benjamin once said that mechanical reproduction kills the ingeniousness of art. However, today, machines ‘re-produce’ even the ‘antique’ pieces, reducing the originality of a work of art to nothing. It is against this background that one has to see M S Chandramouli’s passion towards creating small but magnificent works of art.
Chandramouli, who has completed MA in Sociology who works as an Assistant Accounts Officer in the Postal Department takes time to create murals, pots, designed soaps and even candles.
Things changed from the normal course for him in 2002, when he attended a candle-making workshop in the city.
Attending such workshops not only enhanced his knowledge but also opened new vistas for him to experiment with crafts. “I once took part in a three-day workshop on clay modelling and tie and dyeing which was conducted at National Institute of Design (NID), Bangalore,” he said.
He later experimented with various designs which were initially appreciated by his friends. However, it was his mural art works which brought him attention. Their varieties, not only in design but also in material, especially the use of fibre and stone-powdered moulds on the stones, attracted many craft lovers.
His creation finds a market through a small shop, Sanctuary, near Safina plaza. His works, especially that of Lord Ganesha, Buddha and wall hangings of Last Supper, catch the eye of customers who walk into his shop. “I mostly get orders to make sugar flowers during the Christian weddings. The material is available especially in South Africa and also USA.”
He has also made over 1,000 sugar flowers on the occasion of Puttaparthi Sai Baba’s 80th birthday. Besides making of sugar flowers and moulding the antique crafts, the artiste has also involved himself in making roman dolls, ceramic work, chocolate making and bread crafts.
Currently, Chandramouli is learning the Tanjore paintings under the guidance of Prema Latha, an artiste. “This craft work gives me peace. Time is a major constraint but I am planning to have my own gallery. I also have plans to conduct classes after my retirement,” he concludes.