Nek Chand (1924-2015) - Boy with Basket

Concrete over metal armature with porcelain and mixed media
Circa: 1984
Size: 15" (w) x 29" (h) x 8 1/2" (d)
Nek Chand was a national treasure in India. Over decades (18 of them in secret), he created hundreds of concrete figures over acres of land. This is a particularly good example with the details to the nose, ears, and bindi on the forehead. This is also the only example I have seen where the cobalt blue decoration of the porcelain shards are used as a border for the figure's jacket.

From wikipedia: [Starting in the 1950's] Nek Chand began collecting materials from demolition sites around the city. He recycled these materials into his own vision of the divine kingdom of Sukrani, New Delhi choosing a gorge in a forest near Sukhna Lake for his work. The gorge had been designated as a land conservancy, a forest buffer established in 1902 that nothing could be built on. Chand's work was illegal, but he was able to hide it for eighteen years before it was discovered by the authorities in 1975. By this time, it had grown into a 13-acre (5.3 ha) complex of interlinked courtyards, each filled with hundreds of pottery-covered concrete sculptures of dancers, musicians, and animals. Made from recycled materials, Chand built up the mass with a cement and sand mix before adding a final coating of smoothly burnished pure cement combined with waste materials such as broken glass, bangles, crockery, mosaic and iron-foundry slag.

When the secret project was discovered it was in serios danger of being destroyed, however the public got on his side and the area bacame a national landmark and is now the second most visited site in India after the Taj Mahal

Provenance: Children's Museum Nek Chand Fantasy Garden; American Folk Art Museum

Exhibited 1984-2004: Capital Children's Museum Nek Chand Fantasy Garden

Condition: Excellent with wear commensurate with age and exposure; one tile missing on back of base.

Price: SOLD