For Gurugram-based artist Gopal Namjoshi, metal scraps have proved to have a extraordinary afterlife of their own. The worn out, discarded pieces of junk which seemed to be of very less use have been converted to tall and life-like structures of birds, animals, humans and much more by Namjoshi, out of his open-air studio.
Namjoshi, who has been an artist for the past 25 years has dabbled with all forms of material for art, oils on canvas to plastic waste art to complex murals. But the artist’s long standing love for metal scraps was inspired by a simple incident that took place when he was living in Jaipur. The appeal of metal scarps stuck to Namjoshi when he had once seen a man repairing a scooter and discarding metal parts as scrap. Namjoshi went to inquire him as to what he might do with it, to which the latter replied that they can be welded into other machinery parts. This led the artist to see metal scraps in a different way and use the same for his art.
His murals were already gaining recognition by then when he started working on transforming metal scraps and and set upon to build one of his first sculptures, the peacock series. Originally hailing from Jaipur, Namjoshi’s inspiration came from his younger days when they birds used to visit their home. Made out of rusted iron scraps, the peacocks turned out to be a beautiful sculpture that was a major step in conserving and utilizing the waste.
Namjoshi has created more than 150 art installations made out of metal scraps in many shapes and sizes. His masterpieces adorn places such as Damdama lake of Haryana, where his metal sculptures of wild animals are kept. His structures are also placed in commercial places such as hotels metro cities along with celebrities such as cricketer Virat Kohli’s home.
One of Namjoshi’s recent and breathtaking works is a 16-feet tall masterpiece of a ‘Haryanvi Tau’, a quintessential Haryanvi Uncle, resplendent in his glory and made of 300 kg of metal scraps. Namjoshi, who collects his scraps from mostly small and medium vendors prefers to use them in their raw form and not cut or distort them.