Arun Singhi makes another Lotus bloom – this time a Ganesha, hand carved and painted
Arun Singhi is without doubt one of India’s most talented penturners – to the extent, if I was an Emperor looking to create a monument to writing, that too of epic proportions, one that would defy time, I would, with eyes closed, hand over the project to him. I talk of Emperors and architectural wonders because Arun Singhi has just created, what at first sight looks like, the fountain pen equivalent of the Taj Mahal.
It is an ebonite pen with the standard Jowo nib and a cartridge / converter filling system. But that is where all resemblance to an ordinary fountain pen end. The pen has been chiselled painstakingly to create as relief, an intricate design of Ganapati Bappa, reminiscent of the sculptures that adorn our ancient temples. It has then been painted, again painstakingly by hand, elevating the piece of art to a celestial level.
The Ganesha pen – in fact there will be only nine of them, all numbered pieces – is being created as an exclusive shop edition for Makoba. Naturally, Arun Singhi is tight lipped about the details, especially the tentative pricing. “It takes about eight to ten weeks to create a pen from the scratch and the two craftsmen who have carved and then painted the pens are true masters of their respective art forms. Besides, in the truest tradition of craftsmanship, the creators followed stringent Vedic rituals about abstinence and prayer cycles to complete their masterpieces.” This has been done keeping in mind the fact that in India, a fountain pen is much more than a mere writing instrument – it is also an embodiment of your ruling deity, a blessing that you carry next to your heart, write auspicious things with, an idol that you pray to and venerate.
Lotus, the brand that Arun Singhi has created over the last many years is today globally known for their excellent creations. Aesthetically appealing and functionally robust, this boutique pen manufacturer has carved out a distinct niche among the fountain pen aficionados which can be gauged from the fact that there is a steadily increasing clamour for Lotus pens. Considering the sheer amount of personal intervention that goes into the creation of each Lotus product, not to mention the fact that most of the materials used are top-line imports, the pricing is fairly reasonable, which may be one of the reasons behind the run-away success of the Arun Singhi and Lotus.
Makoba on the other hand is an established upmarket stationery merchandiser, “fountain pen experts” as it were, with both a thriving ecommerce platform and multiple brick-and-mortar stores spread across different cities. The entity is run by entrepreneurs who are now the third generation in the pen, inks and stationery business, stocking some of the fastest moving brands in the segment. They too, need no introduction to pen lovers – their name is enough, as it is colloquially said.
This collaboration between Lotus and Makoba however, is not the first one, as Lotus has created shop-exclusives for Makoba in the past, which have, needless to say, done well. What is remarkable with this particular case, is the way both the entities have consciously moved up the price-value chain to create pieces that will justify the premium pricing that the Ganesha pens are bound to attract. I do not feel that it will be an exaggeration to say that such carved and painted pieces, in ebonite, will certainly enjoy the prime mover advantage. I use the term “prime mover” consciously – yes, there have been painted Ganesha fountain pens, there have been machined pieces that are aimed at the top end of the market as well – but carved and painted, I can’t really recall seeing one. This Lotus-Mokaba collaboration pieces are certainly a class apart and may even end up establishing a new trend in fountain pencraft in India.
I have not written with the pen and am therefore desisting from making a comment on its performance. But if past experience of extensively writing with Lotus creations is any pointer, I will recommend this one blindly. Besides, one cannot go very wrong with a Jowo nib and Schmidt converter combination that has by now become the de rigueur Lotus standard. What is more, Arun Singhi is extremely affable and is known to entertain most requests for customisations so far as the nib / feed choices go.
So, what else? Time to seek the blessings of Siddhi Vinayak.
For More information contact: http://www.lotuspens.com/ http://www.lotuspens.com/