From mighty Himalayan heights to flat Ganges Basin plains, Nepal is an ancient land with an array of fascinating cultures, diverse ethnicity, spectacular scenery and some of the most elaborated metal artistry found anywhere.
Generations of Nepali craftsmen have created beautiful metal objects, from religious statues and religious purpose. While volumes have focused on Nepal's rich tradition of producing bronze statues of Buddha, Krishna, Tara and innumerable other gods and goddesses, comparatively little has documented its simple brass- and bronze- cast lamps used in everyday life.
This book, the second in a series, unravels mysteries behind Nepal's renowned metal industry, focusing on ritual lamps created using the lost wax method. Cultural and religious discourse is included to foster greater understanding of and appreciation for each piece.
During the past twenty years, many craftsmen who embraced this ancient trade have died. Stiff competition from inexpensive, machine-made products have prompted families once passing skills to succeeding generations to switch to less labor- intensive professions. The tradition of creating metalware by hand is all too quickly fading.
The minimal aim of this book is to maintain the memory of this legacy, with hopes that Nepal's present and future generations will continue to appreciate and value the beauty of this unique art form. If this trade is someday lost and forgotten, an important part Nepal's artistic tradition will vanish forever.
Back of the Book
Nepal though till recently secluded and isolated from the world at large, was the home to many exquisite crafts and craftsmen. The quality of the art they produced has to be seen to be believed. There was in fact a time when these were in great demand in the Indian subcontinent. In this modern age the fact that modern technology has yet been able to take over these crafts is in itself a miracle of kinds.
Thanks to people like the author Matthew S Friedman his associate Binod Khambu who had assisted the author in his research, many of these crafts have been brought to the notice of the common man and stand a chance of survival in this fast developing world. Many of the skills employed by these craftsmen have been given a new lease of life. The "Lost Wax Method" is prominent amongst them.
· Well illustrated
· A wide variety of vessels discussed/ described
· The Lost Wax Method described/ discussed in detail
These and many other topics are discussed in full by the author who has provided us with many examples of the different kinds of traditional lamps used by the Nepali people in their religious rites and rituals.
Matthew S Friedman a seasoned traveler and scholar, has spent more than eight years in Nepal working as a technical advisor. It was during this period that he spent many profitable hours studying the traditional art of lamp casting. His first book on the Subject " Nepalese Casted Vessele, Decanters and Bowls" (pilgrims Publishing 2000), has dealt with many other aspects of the craft. He has also published two other popular books " The Gorkha Urn" (Pilgrims Publishing) and " Tara: A Flesh trade Odyssey".
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