- Arts and Design
Awesome Sand Sculptures By Sudarsan Pattnaik (With Pictures)
Lord Jagannath's abode, Puri in Orissa, the pilgrimage center for Hindus is not only famous for the temple but of-late it has also become famous for the beautifully carved sand sculptures by Sudarshan Patnaik.
Sudarshan Patnaik is now a world-renowned sand artist who has won many awards and has got great reception over the years because of the awesome sand sculptures that he creates. With his art, he has created many masterpieces spreading awareness, to congratulating many leaders for their achievement, or to bring notice to the general public about a core issue.
He comes up with sand sculptures on various topical issues and lends his support uniquely. He has created excellent masterpieces on advocating the use of greener methods to cut carbon footprint, to congratulating Barack Obama on his famous win, to paying tribute to pop sensation Micheal Jackson. Some other famous carvings of his are of the 100 Santa Clause Sculpture for which he is the Guinness World Record holder or building a 25 foot Santa Clause for which is included in the Limca Book of World Records, and one got a huge appreciation for building the Black Taj Mahal near to the real one.
The timeline for such artistic pieces is often very less, maybe a day or two, but the impact that it creates is much wider. Several of his sculptures have been shown in various news channels across the world, while some have made it to the front pages of several national dailies in India.
Spreading Awareness Through His ArtClick thumbnail to view full-size
Sudarshan Patnaik comes from a very poor background and lived in a remote village near Puri in Orissa. His childhood days went in intense poverty with not even having money to get primary education. But he did go to the government school; after and before school he used to visit the beautiful golden sea beach near Jagannath temple and make sculptures. Slowly and steadily he started to build various shapes with sand and at a certain point (when he was 12) he started spending his entire day on the beach building different statues. Life for him was the beach and the sand.
He used to build small sculptures from sand and would go away and come after some hours to see how people are reacting to it. As more and more people started recognizing and appreciating his art he started to take this seriously. The domestic media highlighted his art locally and slowly the national media also highlighted some of those.
Puri being a pilgrimage center only helped his art survive. Scores of people from various places in India visit Jagannath temple and the beach being famous helped him tremendously. Appreciation from pilgrims and tourist gave him recognition and fame.
In 1991, he started India's first sand art institute in Puri where he taught children to learn this art form. Now he represents India in various international competitions and has had a chance to showcase his art in every part of the world.
Various historical scriptures show that Puri beach was once considered as one of the main places where sand art existed in ancient times. Mr. Patnaik is just taking the legacy forward. So much so that he is also credited as the pioneer of sand art in India. Many students are getting trained and are working with him.
Despite all this, he didn't get much support from the state or the central government. He has often complained publicly about this. Lately, the state government of Orissa awarded him the "Think Odisha Leadership Award", and NALCO a public sector company made him as the company's first brand ambassador.
His dream is to make this art form famous in India and bring India to the international stage. His attempt to make this art form popular is showing some results with one of student Manas Kumar Sahoo went on to become a semi-finalist in India's Got Talent. Many children in Orissa are also taking this art form seriously.
He is now an icon for many budding artists who love this art and want to make a career out of this.
Other Great Sand Art By Sudarshan PatnaikClick thumbnail to view full-size
© 2012 Kannan Reddy