Sculptures Of Jungshahi

By: Rizwan Ali Brohi

The form of sculpture that I practice involves the aesthetic of the human vestige emerging from within a block of raw stone. The emphasis is upon creating a portrait or an intuitive work that projects emotional intelligence and upon first glance, speaks directly to the heart." These words quoted by a famous sculpture.

Sculpting as an art form, in fact, goes all the way back to Prehistoric times. Sculpture is among the oldest of the arts. Even before painting cave walls, early humans fashioned shapes from stones. From these beginnings, artifacts have evolved to their current complexities. In any case, sculptures place among the greatest of human achievements.

The land of Sindh also had been known rich in this artistry of epigraphy, sculpting, engraving and stone carving. Though, District Thatta, and its historical places, hills, graveyards, are big evidences of this artistry. However, Jungshahi is a town of Thatta which is not only known as city of stones, mines and minerals but it is also recognized for its hardworking sculptures. In spite of that the art of sculpting has been modernized but the sculptures of Jungshahi are still working in the same process as ancient traditions. This is how they retain their identity.

Especially, the Baloch tribes are well-known artists in this field. They are hardworking and loving-labor people.

They are working in this field by almost 2.5 centuries; they specially migrated from Balouchistan to find a suitable place as mountainous Jungshahi for their professional and cultural work for livelihood.

The people of Jungshahi used to smash the mountains with huge labor.

These sculptors deal in work of making designs on stone of marbles, limestone, graveyards, making statues of stones, and decorating historical places, rehabilitation and grindstones, other commodities of stones as (Chakra).(Hukkra)and (Kharral), Hence, their source of profession or income is only based on these works.

They make graveyards, as their ancients had even good command in it, while now this tradition is almost dying. Quit few people have these particular skills which are still available.

While in statue making, there are few brains that put themselves in this art. But unfortunately, lack of awareness and unavailability of modern instruments, they are unable to show their hidden talents, if such facilities are provided, it will help them to introduce their identifications in world.

In near-past, the grindstones used to be a basic need of each home, but now it is replaced by the new modern mills of grind machines.

They make these grindstones by hard stone of granite stone. People discover these stones by good labor and they have good artistry for make grindstones of different sizes from that stone. This production of Grindstones are used to be supplied to many parts of country but specially it is supplied in Umerkot, Thar and Hyderabad, however the little size of grindstones (Jhund) are used mostly in homes of rural areas. While the big size's (Chucky) are used in flour mills.

They spent lot of time in making grindstones of large size, they work under the trees as traditionally and they use old fashions tools during work such as chisel, hammer, rasps and scales of iron. They beat stones quite hardly while making grindstones.

On the other hand, they don't have any shops or other factories where they can work easily so that their production could increase. In order, they can not earn a sufficient amount for their livelihood.          

Hammering a stones hardly and consistently in whole day is actually a panic work to do in spite of that each person hardly earns Rs.300 in a day. Many sculptures facing many diseases as like breath taking problems, mainly they become the patients of T.B. Nonetheless, during the beating stones, they get nasty blows from iron pieces and stones because those smashes directly hits in their eyes, consequently, they suffer from a lot of injuries in their lives.

They put their lives in danger but serve the public; which is the most important message of humanity.      

In this view, when we asked these sculptures about there issues, they replied that they just do this work because there is no other option of any profession or employment but it has been their compulsion of doing this work for their livelihood, in the end, its not enough for them. Few of senior sculptors suggest that, this is their cultural and ancient profession by generations therefore they don't want it to be finished.

Sculptures of Jungshahi's are playing dependable role in saving their cultures and tradition of sculpting. But they are deprived of modern machines and it looks as this artistry may go in gloominess. It is therefore necessary that government of Sindh should make a plan to provide them modern machines or tools to them so that they can go on with their profession, as this ancient work should remain in part of Sindh.