The museum pieces were collected by retired school teacher, Raji Punnoose. It was during her teaching stint at the Bay Islands of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands that she developed an interest in collecting driftwood deposited by the sea on the shores. The Bay Islands are often threatened by cyclones and the sea around is a tumultuous and unpredictable one. This peculiarity brings in a lot of driftwood to the shores.
The sea carries to the shore only the hard part of the tree, which has drifted on the waves having withstood, perhaps, years of stormy weather. With a little effort and some skill, these tree roots can be made into a sculpture. Often, the driftwoods, in their original shape, resemble living beings - mostly animals, reptiles, birds and fishes. The artist chisels, trims or otherwise modifies the piece of driftwood into an appropriate shape. Sometimes, nature’s artistry is so pronounced that only a little polishing is required.
|Sculptures - An Overview