He sees ‘beauty and art’ in scrap

Haminder Singh Boprai

Objects discarded by human beings as waste inspire sculptor Haminder Singh Boprai to create something beautiful.

"In times when we are combating environmental issues like global warming, generating waste is like adding to our problems. In these pieces I see beauty and art. The very pieces of waste put together become pieces of art, giving an important message of recycling and managing our own waste," says Boprai, whose exhibition Parwaz 2 was held recently at Dr M S Randhawa Art Gallery, Punjab Agricultural University.

While a discarded can used to carry milk by milkmen adorned with a discarded seat of a tractor becomes a bar stool or dancing girls, the long-forgotten oil tanks of Bullet motorcycle become cranes standing tall and elegant. The wings of a discarded exhaust fan become a butterfly while small metal pieces become the regal Lord Ganesha when guided and put together by Boprai.

"Actually, dealing in scrap serves a huge purpose for me too. I come from a humble background with agriculture being our profession. I have never thought of dealing in expensive painting or sculptor medium. Scrap is easy to get and cheap, and one does not even need to paint them. It serves my purpose and when I see these installations all around me, I become rich," says Boprai, who teaches art at a local school.

Recipient of many awards, Boprai, who faces a speech problem, says, "I feel it is human beings like me who get to think beyond what is normal. Faced with challenges of life, I get to see and feel a perspective that a normal person misses. My art then covers all my limitations."

And here's his message to his art fraternity: "Please do not copy. Hard work is the only key, and it pays. In present time when Internet is a global tool, the reach of an artist is immense. At times I hesitate to show my creations on the net fearing that someone will copy. But then a thought crosses my mind which says someone will copy only when the work is worth it. Yet, at the end of it all, copying does hurt."

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