Mumbai. Inspired by internationally acclaimed sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik, who makes popular and relevant sculptures out of sand at Puri beach in Odisha, Darshan Naik, a 16-year-old boy from Jogeshwari, has decided to make sculptures out of kachra (garbage and thrown away items) at Juhu beach.
Darshan claims that he got this idea after hearing about Sudarsan Pattnaik and Rock Garden of Chandigarh, which has sculptures made out of thrown away items.
“Juhu beach has the best of both Puri and Chandigarh – a sea shore and ocean of thrown away items – so I decided to fuse both the ideas to become a kachra artist,” Darshan told Faking News.
Initially Darshan wanted to become a sand artist and he even tried making some figures with sand at Juhu beach, but his attempts were washed away.
“No no, not by ocean water,” Darshan clarified, “Last Diwali I had made a large diya at the beach using sand, but some guys thought I had made urinal and they pissed into it, destroying my art.”
“Once I made Aladin’s carpet but a family put their mat on it and started their picnic before I could make Aladin on it,” he recounted his failed attempts of becoming Sudarsan Pattnaik of Mumbai.
Frustrated, Darshan realized that it was not sea shore or the sand that people valued at Juhu beach. He looked around and found garbage. He concluded that people at Juhu beach were more interested in kachra.
“That’s when the idea of being a kachra artist struck me,” the young man explained, “I had read about Chandigarh’s Rock Garden, and thought to use the magic here.”
However, it was not easy for Darshan, he claims.
“First time I collected kachra, municipality workers came and set it on fire before I returned with paints. Second time I was beaten up by cops for littering, even though they never stopped others from throwing kachra. And third time dogs bit me for taking away their food,” he said.
But Darshan hasn’t given up and continues to make sculptures out of garbage thrown at Juhu beach. His work was noted by celebrity filmstar and critic KRK (Kamaal Rashid Khan) when he thought one of the sculptures of Darshan resembled his face.
KRK later tweeted the picture claiming his statue was installed at Juhu beach, and that’s how Darshan’s art became popular and viral.
“Actually, it was just kachra collected and dumped in a pile. I had not even begun, but he thought I had made his face, so I didn’t contradict him,” Darshan reveals.