The Installation of the Media Studio’s Front Doors

The Media Studio's entryway doors have officially been completed and installed. After weeks of careful work the old doors from the building have been completely refurbished and reinstalled side by side. They are made of redwood, with Cook pine panels and brass medallions from India.

With this step the building is finally closed up. Now the only major project keeping the Ganapti Kulam from moving in is the installation of the vinyl flooring, which will happen soon.
This renovation has been a long road, and there is lots more intricate woodwork to be done, but completion is not too far into the future.

Silpi at the Forge

The bronze memorial of Iraivan Temple builders is being worked on in Hawaii and Colorado. In Hawaii, Holly Young is finishing the wax of two silpis on a pillar stone. And in Colorado Debbie Bakel is putting the patina on the Silpi at the Forge. As our slideshow proves, the creative process is dynamic, and the sketches we began with evolved. In particular, Holly made the entire forge! It so gives the authentic feel of the heating of the mild steel chisels over the hot coals. Debbie used special metallic mixes to get the color of fire. Here is the artisan's short notes sent with the photos.

The sculpture was patinaed using the same methods as the other sculptures. I used Acrylic paints and pastewax with oxide powders mixed in layers in to mimic the colors of the oven and fire.

This piece like all of Holly's pieces almost did itself. That means all the textures I needed to make a surface believable were already there, in the bronze.

I especially liked this figure. It must take strength and patience to do this job. Holly captures the strength in the figure's arms and shoulders without making it look like anything is forced. It makes me think the man has done this many times before and is one with the endeavor.

He has a peaceful confident face, another indication that the person is a Master. I love the way Holly finds the beauty in faces and especially eyes.

On April 23rd I will be applying the final wax coat to protect the bronze from your elements. It gives the last depth and I will take nice photos at that time for you.

Until then,

Debbie Bakel

Enjoy the slideshow as our fourth masterpiece nears completion

Satguru Carving Progress

Jiva writes to us from the carving site in Bangaluru:

We are almost near perfecting the face of Gurudeva. We  have reduced the original hair with the Rudraksha Malas by over 5 inches. We are comparing the face to the face sculpted by a Holly Young and refining it.
I've been spending a lot of time to get the special features in Gurudeva's nose right, along with his cheeks. Please burn some prayers in the homa fire since we are working on these two very important works and need a lot of blessings from the inner worlds.

The photos are a little blury because of the granite dust floating around by others using the machines.

The granite model of Bodhinatha arrived a couple of days ago. As usual, the initial carvers only bring it about half way to perfection. We have started working on it and will ensure that anyone who sees the model will know for sure who He is. Very detailed measurements are taken and transferred the same to the granite model and then we begin the long process of bringing forth the artistic talent, so that at the end of the day, we have Bodhinatha with us. I am personally spending hours with the carvers working on every detail. -Jiva.

Media Studio Progress

Today, the Media Studio's wallpaper is being installed. The artwork, originally created by S. Rajam, has been printed into giant murals by ARC Pacific on Oahu. The artwork is being put up by two skilled installers, Lyle and Mark. Most of the mural art will have wooden wainscoting installed beneath it, with a large redwood piece of trim above. Many other parts of the project are nearing completion as well. The finish stonework is moving along quickly, the vents and screens are being created put in place, the window shades have been installed, the exterior lighting is being completed and the rolls of vinyl flooring have arrived, ready to be installed in the coming week.

Mango Desk Tops Near Completion

The desktops for the new Media Studio are being made of a special mango wood. The tree, a giant one, was gifted to the monastery a few years back, and we recently milled the massive trunk for the new desks for the monks. Today they are receiving their finish, creating stunning contrast and bringing out their beautiful designs.

This ancient tree had such color inside, and after being planed and sanded, the wood looks more like some exotic art form. Check out the closeups in this slideshow. Notice one of them has a natural edge, so you can still see the shape of the tree.

Which one should we send off to MOMA?

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