A new stone age

A new stone age

Stone Art’s kansa collection brings forth ancient sculpting methods with modern refinement

It was after Stone Art was commissioned to recreate the Taj Mahal, Charminar, Qutub Minar, India Gate and Red Fort at a private farmhouse in Odisha, that Ashutosh Bansal, managing director of the Delhi-based brand, truly understood the need for attention to detail.

“During the execution of the Qutub Minar, we realised it had an ayat (verse) inscribed on it. Recognising our limitations, we decided to call in a maulanaji to help us reproduce the inscription. This experience has shaped the essence of our brand since,” says the 27-year-old.

Stone Art specialises in all things stone, and their latest is a collection of kansa sculptures. The thoroughness is seen in the new bronze pieces as well, with each giving a fresh lease of life to the lost-wax technique, an ancient sculpting method dating back to the Indus Valley Civilisation. “They’re emblematic of the artisanship that didn’t use modern machinery. While the sculptures predominantly feature bronze, some of them incorporate stone accents for depth and dimension,” he says.

A plethora of carving techniques has been employed, ensuring that contours and textures are faithfully reproduced. Whether capturing the delicate features of human forms or the complex patterns of nature, a skilful and patient implementation process follows.

“Painting methods were applied sparingly, with subtle touches of colour used to accentuate specific elements of the sculptures, while patination gave them the appearance of period pieces. We also spent massive time on textures as each required a different finish—smooth, polished, one with patterns or motifs,” says the eighth-generation heir in the family business. With a heritage spanning over 150 years, Bansal’s predecessors were the suppliers of stones for the construction in Lutyens’ Delhi, including the Parliament House, the fountains of India Gate and the Supreme Court.

The young entrepreneur carries the weight of a rich legacy built painstakingly by his family during his formative years. As a result, Bansal, who harboured dreams of joining the family business since a young age, today manages all aspects of its operations. His destiny was clearly etched in stone.

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The New Indian Express
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