Dhokra is the 4000-year old metal-craft of casting non-iron metals using the lost wax casting technique. The famous Dancing Girl of Mohenjo Daro was created using this ancient technique. Which means when you buy a piece of Dhokra art you buy a piece of living history, an unbroken chain of communication through thousands of years.
The craft was originally practiced by traditional tribal metal-smiths from West Bengal, Orissa and Jharkhand. The migrating tribesman have slowly spread the craft all over India. The Dhokra craftsmen take inspiration from nature and daily life bringing alive animals and tribesman in pieces of ornamental or functional art.
In South India the casting is done with a completely solid piece of wax while in Central and East India the more traditional hollow casting is more prevalent. For the hollow casting methods craftsmen create a clay core. The process begins with a unique mix of riverine clay, farmland earth and cow dung dried and mixed in particular proportion. This dough is then used to create a core that serves as a base for the sculpture. It is roughly the size, shape and basic form of the final sculpture. Several layers of different composition make up the core which is dried over a day or two. A mix of beeswax and resin or lac is then harvested and mixed. The beeswax mixture is then formed into long threads, ready for ornamenting the sculpture. The artist adds ornamentation and fine detail, delicately covering the core with wax threads. This creates the detailed structure for the mold to take later. Several more layers of specifically mixed clay are carefully covered over the wax decorations. The mold is then coated with leaves of the bean tree to make it sticky and held together. Another final layer of clay is applied over this. The channels left to allows the metal to flow in, are sealed at this stage.
The mold is dried and baked after unsealing the channels, in a specially prepared wood-fired oven. The holes allow the lac and wax mixture to flow out leaving a hollow cavity behind. Meanwhile metal, often brass scraps, is melted in a second oven. Once the metal reaches a certain temperature, it is poured into the mold through the channels and allowed to cool. Once cooled and set, the clay mold is broken off revealing the finely wrought metal form underneath. The statue is then filed and polished to perfection for the enjoyment of art connoisseurs everywhere. Characteristically long willowy forms, brass and bronze patina objects and delicate embellishments are the hallmark of this art form. With increasing popularity and support for the art, the earlier nomadic craftsmen are now beginning to adopt a more settled way of life.
Medium: Dhokra Metal Casting Size: 7"x6" inches This eye-catching sculpture in brass, offers a playful and thought-provoking portrait of a couple together. It has been created with the painstaking traditional Dhokra metal craft process using the ancient lost wax technique.
Medium: Dhokra metal casting Size: 7"x6" inches This eye-catching sculpture in brass, offers a humorous and thought-provoking portrait of a couple together. It has been created with the painstaking, traditional Dokra metal craft process using the ancient lost wax
Size: 3 ft x 3 ft Availability: 3-4 weeks Danteshwari Temple at Jagdalpur is an ancient temple built by the kings of Bastar for their kuldevi, the family Goddess, Devi Danteshwari. Devi Danteshwari is traditionally the Goddess of entire Bastar division, equally worshipped by Hindus as well as tribals. Each year during Dussera thousands of bastar tribals visit the temple to...
Size: 10'' x 36" Availability: 3-4 weeks This super metal cast figurine of local warrior symbolises the cultures and traditions of the tribal people of Bastar. The warrior is seen holding a spear in one hand and shield in another.
Size: 2 ft x 3 ft Availability: 3-4 weeks Danteshwari Temple at Jagdalpur is an ancient temple built by the kings of Bastar for their kuldevi, the family Goddess, Devi Danteshwari. Devi Danteshwari is traditionally the Goddess of entire Bastar division, equally worshipped by Hindus as well as tribals. Each year during Dussera thousands of bastar tribals visit the temple to...
Medium: Dhokra Metal Casting Size: 13"x7" This exquisite and poetic Dokra brass sculpture captures the sense of freedom finding its voice. It has been handcrafted using the ancient lost wax technique.
Medium: Dhokra Metal Casting Size: 14"x26" inches Whimsical and captivating, this is a Dhokra brass sculpture titled ‘Gate to Heaven’. It has been handcrafted using the ancient lost wax technique.
Size: 10" (inches) x 4 ft Availability: 3-4 weeks Figurines of lovers "Jhitku Mitki", are worshipped by the local Gond tribals to fulfil their desires. According to the popular folklore, Mitki, the only sister among seven brothers was to marry Jhitku. However, her brothers sacrificed Jhitku to please the goddess. Mitki could not bear this separation and ended her life....