Indians love mythology, and Lord Ganesha is amongst the most popular mythological gods in our country. Not just for religious devotees, but even artists and businessmen have a strong inclination for the lord of luck, whose statues and paintings can be seen in most Hindu homes. To celebrate the 125 years of establishment, décor brand Episode recently completed construction of massive Ganesh idols which are 4.75 feet in height and 4.5 feet in width making them the largest and tallest silver Ganesh idols in the world.
According to the makers, the cost of the big silver Ganesha called Maheshwaram is 23.5 Lakh (2.35 million Indian rupees) and it is carved in precious sterling silver. The statue depicts a seated Ganesha, with a conch shell, the Bhagavad Gita, and a lotus in his hands and mouse at his feet. His crown is embedded with emeralds, while the ornaments are crafted using rubies and other semi-precious stones. Deepak Whorra, director of Episode, mentions, “Initially, the idea came as a challenge from one of our biggest industrialist customers, and slowly the thought process evolved into creating an homage to Lord Ganesha with silver. This is a limited edition piece and we intend to produce only 11 pieces for worldwide sale. The design was conceptualised as a traditional form with a contemporary twist to depict the lord of wisdom and wealth. A substantial amount of silver was used to create the idol, and to add to that is the wastage that we incurred in making and remaking several parts.”
Speaking about the creation of this huge idol, Whorra informs that a team of craftsmen from Kolkata, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, and Benaras arrived in Delhi to design the idol and its jewellery. While it took four months to conceptualise the design, the remaining time was spent executing it. He says, “Since we did not have any prototype, the manufacturing process itself was starting from a blank and, as and when a part was created, we had to visualize the next part. Once we had to go back to the drawing board to start from scratch as the parts were not in sync with the basic framework. It took us several years to complete this project - of course with long breaks in between as routine production was required to survive. The first piece was completed in 2013 and then we had a long break before the second piece was manufactured in 2018. We are now in the process of completing the third piece. Due to the high investment involved, we could start on a subsequent piece only after the existing statue was sold. Several highly skilled artisans were involved to finish the project – we got a team of more than seven craftsmen on board including a pattern maker, a wax carving person, a hammering / raising crafts specialist, etc. Even polishing this piece involved special techniques as it could not be done by one individual as the statue has to be held by several people before it could be buffed. The artwork is open to public viewing in our Delhi outlet in Greater Kailash.”