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Traditional Chola Bronze Casting in Tanjavur, India


The centuries old technique to make solid bronze sculptures in the Chola style
The centuries old technique to make solid bronze sculptures in the Chola style

At Vedic Futura, we are fortunate to have the opportunity to 3D scan a diverse range of sculptures, including some exceptional pieces attributed to the Chola bronzes. Renowned as the pinnacle of metal sculpture from India, Chola bronzes are esteemed for their intricate craftsmanship and artistic excellence.

Renowned as the pinnacle of metal sculpture from India, Chola bronzes are esteemed for their intricate craftsmanship and artistic excellence.

These sculptures, characterized by their lifelike proportions, intricate details, and spiritual symbolism, represent a remarkable artistic heritage. By employing 3D scanning technology, we capture and preserve the essence of these extraordinary Chola bronzes, allowing enthusiasts and researchers alike to explore and appreciate their beauty and historical significance in a digital realm.

characterized by their lifelike proportions, intricate details, and spiritual symbolism, represent a remarkable artistic heritage.

These bronze sculptures are created by the Lost Wax Process. Check out the video detailing their creative process. Here's a brief explainer on whats going on:


The lost wax casting process is a traditional method used to create intricate and detailed Chola bronzes. This process dates back thousands of years and has been utilized by various civilizations around the world.


The process begins with an artist creating a model or a prototype of the desired sculpture. This model is usually made from a material such as clay, wax, or a combination of both. The artist meticulously sculpts the model, paying attention to the intricate details and proportions.


Once the model is complete, a mold is created around it. The mold is usually made of a mixture of clay and other materials such as sand or powdered stone. The mold is carefully applied to the model, ensuring that all the details are captured. The mold is left to dry and harden, forming a rigid outer shell.


Once the mold is completely dry, it is heated to a high temperature. This causes the wax or clay model to melt and flow out of the mold, leaving behind a hollow cavity in the shape of the original sculpture. This step gives the process its name, as the wax is "lost" during this stage.


The hollow mold is then filled with molten metal, typically bronze. The metal is poured into the mold through small openings or channels strategically placed in the mold to allow the metal to flow smoothly and fill all the intricate details. The mold is left to cool and solidify, allowing the metal to take the shape of the original model.



After the metal has cooled and solidified, the outer mold is carefully broken or chipped away, revealing the rough casting of the sculpture inside. The casting is then refined and polished by skilled artisans, who remove any imperfections and work on the fine details using various tools and techniques.


Finally, the finished Chola bronze sculpture is given a patina or a surface treatment to enhance its appearance and protect it from corrosion. The patina can be achieved through chemical processes or by applying layers of different materials, such as oxides or lacquers, to create the desired color and texture.




The lost wax casting process allows for the creation of highly detailed and intricate sculptures. This ancient technique has been passed down through generations of artisans, contributing to the rich cultural heritage and artistic legacy of the Chola civilization.


Video Source: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxskLjGX-QGChlK5FJepTlw

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