Published: 28th February 2019
Meet Gattem Venkatesh, a micro artist from AP, who carves intricate designs on soaps and even toothpicks
"My father is a farmer and my mother a homemaker and they have always encouraged me and my art," says Gattem Venkatesh
As a child, Gattem Venkatesh, who was born in Chinadoddigallu village in Andhra Pradesh, used to visit artisans near his house. He kept going back to them, every time, with new questions about their craft. Soon, they taught him how to carve (these were artisans who use to carve on wood) and encouraged him to create art. The biggest takeaway for Venkatesh was when one of the artisans told him, "Art has no rules and regulations. No one can stop you." And today, the 21-year-old youngster has made this his life's motto. Venkatesh is a micro artist and carves his masterpieces on pencil lead, chalk pieces, matchsticks, and even toothpick! He has intricately carved the Eiffel Tower, the National Emblem, the World Cup trophy and a lot more. His fame reached even former President Pranab Mukherjee, as Venkatesh was invited to Delhi to meet him last year. The former president, who is also a Bharat Ratna awardee, encouraged him and advised him to never leave his art. Some wise words to abide by, we'd say!
Hall of fame: Venkatesh with all the records and recognition he has bagged | (Pic: Gattem Venkatesh)
While meeting the 13th president of India was surely the high point of Venkatesh's life, who is currently in his fifth year of architecture at GITAM, he has several other accolades to his credit. He has not only bagged several records, but he was also conferred with an honorary doctorate from the International Peace University in Germany. Way to go! Currently, Venkatesh is also occupied with teaching his art to other enthusiasts in government schools. He teaches them the very basics on the first day of this two-day workshop, and on the second day, he displays his own work. "This encourages them to pursue art too," says the youngster.
Under Venky Art Organisation, Venkatesh teaches arts and crafts in government schools as a part of art awareness camps
This self-taught artist has indeed come a long way and intends to go much further. "I want to be the best artists," he says with determination. Clearly, the artist is not satisfied with the mentions in record books like Limca and Guinness. He yearns to be more and do more.
The list goes on
Some of the recognitions Venkatesh has garnered
- Ugadi Puraskar 2018 from Chief Minister of AP, N Chandrababu Naidu
- Featured in Guinness World Records in 2017
- Featured in Limca Book of Records in 2016
- He has an Artisan ID card from the Ministry of Textiles, Government of India
Some of his work
For more on him, click on gattemvenkatesh891.wixsite.