Coming from a family of stalwarts of Art of Carving, Neeraj Bondwal understands and values the legacy that he carries. With five National awardees and a Shilp-Guru (Rajendra Bondwal) award, the Bondwal family stands next to none. Traditionally his grandfather and father and uncles used to work on ivory for generations. With change of time, they had to shift to Sandalwood and then to Kadam and Abnoos wood.
The material has to have high density of grains to hold shapes of thin and delicate Undercut carving.Many of us have seen the Elephant shape undercut made inside another elephant, both in marble and in wood. This was first made by Neeraj Bondwal’s father Mahavir Bondwal Ji, for which he received the national award too. Neeraj Ji carries on his legacy and has worked upon mastering his own style.
A regular participant of Hunar-haat and International Trade Fairs, Neeraj Bondwal laments on the lack of continuous work round the year. “Its hard to carry on working without orders as each small piece takes days of skilled carving and polishing “ he says. While he strives to keep innovating and up-skilling himself with occasional interactions with wood craftsmen from other countries, he is worried about the future of his family treasure and its passing-on to his next generation.
HasthCraft is proud to be associated to this esteemed Bondwal family and aspires to partner in their endeavor of keeping the Art of Wood carving alive for generations to come.