PRAVAKAR , WHO CREATS MUSIC ON STONE
By Saroj Kumar Jena,
Associated Media Foundation
Bhubaneswar, Immortality as far as we’re concerned. Nothing in this world lasts forever, but did you know that stone, they claim it deteriorates one-sixteenth of an inch every hundred years(?). Sri Pravakar Moharana, a National awardee for stone carving. He is a person with strong determination, uninterrupted hunt for creativity and innovation to explore the beauty associated with skill and craft. A timeless skill in danger of being forgotten but brought to life in beautiful arts and incredible skill and craft by a great stone carver of all time wel-come to the world of the Stone carver Sri Prabhakar Moharana . not only in the country Moharana proved his mettle in several international forums.
He has brought pride and accolades for the country and state by representing the traditional stone sculpture art of Odisha in many international forums. Countries like Brazil, Malaysia, Perth, Singapore, France, Zimbawe, Australia, Italy has got chances to explore Mr Moharans artistic exposures. On the eve of 50 years independence celebration of India, he visited Brazil in South America in 1997 and demonstrated the exquisite artistic skills of Stone Sculpture of Odisha. He has significantly contributed to the promotion of traditional stone crafts of Odisha in countries such as Australlia(Perth) in 1998 & 2000, Malaysia & Singapore in 2003, France (Paris) in 2007, Italy (Milan) in 2007 & 2009, South Africa (Zimbabwe) in 2013. He has demonstrated the craftsmanship skills and enriched the cultural glory of the country under the sponsorship of Ministry of Textile, Government of India, (Development Commissioner (Handicrafts) and Temple of Fine Arts International, Coimbatore, India.
Mr Moharana was born into an artisan family near the historical Sun temple of Konark in 1960. During his childhood and schooling days he was attracted towards drawings and paintings. that tempted him so much, he visited temple to draw sketches of different art forms of sculptures and paintings.
Observing his talents his father late Sadhu Charan Moharana, who is an artist in wood carving put him in ‘state handicrafts training centre’headed by Gokul Chandra Patnaik, to be trained in stone sculpture in 1975 There he was groomed under another national awardee guru Satyabadi Moharana He perfected himself under guru LaL Mohan Moharana and inthe year 1997 started his own production unit in Bhubaneswar.
Pravakar provided opportunity to the talented and needy boys who come from remote villages to work with him. Till date 150 of such boys have been trained by him. In addition he also had the opportunity to train 90 potential needy boys under different training programmers including SHTP and Guru Sisya Parampara of Development Commissioner (Handicraft) Govt. of India since 1988. It is noteworthy to mention here that the first SHTP was inaugurated by Sri Kalyan Dey Ex- Regional Director (DCH) at village Sujanagar, Puri which is the native village of Sri Moharana. The Govt. of Odisha has also given him an opportunity to train 15 needy Sisyas – disciples under the Guru Sisya Parmpara scheme during 2011-12. All of his students are now employed and flowering thousands of budding artisans of tomorrow who could preserve and promote the pristine glory of stone art . As of today there are many of his students who are working in Akshyaradham Temple in New Delhi. In 1997 when the Mater Creation programme of Delhi Haat was started by DC(H), Sri Moharana has been able to participate in the programme five times to demonstrate the works of his students and sale the products produced by them. He has started Pravakar Creative Art Gallery at Nagar Bazar in Kolkata where the works of his students are sold. In addition to this, he supplies the stone crafts produced by his students to CCIC in Delhi so as to provide marketing opportunity and regular income to the trained students. Every year on the occasion of Guru Diwas, All students visit the Guru at his workshop cum residence and celebrate the occasion by honouring the Guru. This has up held the Guru Sisya parampara (Tradition) to strengthen soldierly and the bondage of relationship between Guru & Sisya
As a Master Crafts Person, Mr Maharana excelled quickly in his profession. He was conferred with State Award in 1987 for his outstanding piece of work in stone Carving on “Surya Narayan of Konark Temple”.He was bestowed with the prestigious National Award on Stone Sculpture in 1992 for his magnificent craftsmanship in Stone Sculpture based on the concept of “Kandarpa Hasti” (Kandarpa Elephant imbibed from Mathura Vijaya) . He was conferred with prestigious national honor of “Chinta “O” Chetana” in the year 2012 in recognition and appreciation of his craftsmanship skills.
Pravakar has not only promoted the name and fame of the country but also earned foreign currency by displaying and selling stone sculptures of Odisha in international markets. His unique way of displaying his body posture to show the different stone statutes earned him “Best Artist award from Temple of Fine Arts” in Malaysia. Under the leadership of Buddha Guru Sri Dalai Lama he has established many stone crafted Buddha Statues in Bhutan, Himachal Pradesh, Japan, Tibet and Taiwan that has brought him appreciation from many art lovers and Buddhists. His stone craft includes a charm and originality of its own and pristine beauty that remains untouched by time. His work has been highly appreciated by former President of India Honourable Sankardayal Sharma, Former Prime Ministers Honorable Chandra Sekhar and Honorable P.V Narasimha Rao. His craftsmanship skills and works have been highlighted by different newspapers &Television in India and abroad. He has been honored by the Supreme Court of Bhutan for installation of Buddha Statues in the Court. Under his direction “Sati Mata Temple” in Surat, Gujrat and “Jagannath Temple” in Nigeria are being constructed. Presently 8 feet high Abalokeswara Statue is now ready to be dispatched to Vietnam. Work of 18 feet long Buddha statue has already started for Taiwan.
Mr Maharana’s works are distinct, unique and could be recognized by well-known artists in different places.
At the age of fifty six he works hard and sees that every piece of work is qualitatively good and different from others. He has long way to achieve his dreams of promoting the traditional stone sculpture of Odisha both in India and abroad. He deserves awards and accolades from different authorities towards recognition and appreciation of his wonderful craftsmanship skills. His one and only wish is to revive the languishing Konark Kala (art form) – let the craft survive, more and more artisans come to the occupation and earn a their livelihood to lead a dignified life.
Pravakar is always happy in creating music on stones and making others to enjoy his arts and crafts as listening to devotional music. Pravakar’s crafts will live forever spreading its wings in different parts of the world to be loved by one and all.