News Karnataka
Tuesday, November 28 2023

‘Vighnavinayaka’ sculpture by Shekhar Kalmadi in demand

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Udupi: As Ganesh Chaturthi approaches, there is a significant surge in the demand for Ganesha idols, particularly for eco-friendly clay ones.
This festival is widely celebrated publicly throughout the district, with Ganesha idols adorning both homes and public spaces, driving up the demand for these idols in the region.
The Ganesha idols crafted by Shekhar Poojary Kalmadi, an experienced artisan with nearly four decades of expertise, are in high demand. Kalmadi, who serves as an art teacher and headmaster at Nehru High School in Alavur, actively engages in the creation of Ganesha idols.
Before crafting the Ganesha idols, they conduct a Ganahoma ceremony to seek blessings from Anegudde Ganapati. Following this ritual, they engage in a well-organized and disciplined approach to creating the idols. Assisting in this endeavor are Jayakar Poojary, Umesh Acharya, Subramanya, Natesh Bhat, Ramzan, and Vinod Manchi.
Obtaining soil for crafting Ganesha idols has become a significant hurdle in recent times. Many factories that used to supply the required clay have shut down, causing a shortage in the market. Previously, clay was accessible in Malpe, Ambalapady, and Petri regions for idol-making purposes. However, now, it needs to be sourced from Gulwadi in Kundapur, as mentioned by Shekhar Kalmadi.
I’ve been crafting Ganesha idols for the Alavur Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Samiti right from the start. This year, I am also involved in creating a Ganesha idol with a resemblance to Lord Ganesha at Lalbagh in Mangaluru. Additionally, there is a request for a Ganapati idol resembling Lord Venkateswara in Tirupati, and I am working on this idol for Mattu and Shantinagar.
The preference is for eco-friendly idols that do not involve the use of any chemicals. There is a notable demand for colorless clay Ganapati idols, especially for home worship. He mentioned that he is creating Ganesha idols in various postures to meet the requests from people throughout the district.

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