Moulded in Art
Creating masterpieces through porcelain, Lladró sculptor, Raúl Rubio made his first maiden visit to India. Here, he speaks about working with sculptures inspired by Indian mythological figures, his art and the creation of pristine porcelain figurines
How did you start sculpting? Was there any other medium of art that you were also inclined towards?
Art is the same, whatever art you do. I started out by helping my dad since I was very young, and that’s how I got fascinated and got into this field.
How do you conceive designs for the figurines you create?
We share ideas with the Lladró team, and once we get an approval, we go ahead with the work. For example, with regard to the Indian figurines, I did a lot of research on Indian art and things related to the mythological figures, and I submitted ideas on what I could do. They got approved and I began working on the Ganeshas and the Rama-Sita, among others.
What is the creative process when you’re creating these pieces?
There’s a lot of creative freedom, once ideas are approved. Even when we start working, there’s no particular deadline that we have to observe. We have to finish the task in a basic frame of time, but it’s not completely binding. Lladró doesn’t put any other kind of restrictions, except for ensuring that we don’t work with any other companies that make and deal with similar goods. Sharing of ideas outside of Lladró is not permitted.
What was the first sculpture you created for Lladró?
It was 10 years ago, and it was a flamenco dancer. I’ve been with Lladró for 10 years now.
How would you describe the way you design and express your creative sensibilities?
It really depends on what people want from us. It depends on what works and what is appreciated by the clientele. We cater to them and create pieces that are in sync with their sensibilities.
What is it about figures from Hindu mythology that you find so fascinating?
I’m not into religion as such. Hindu mythology was just something that caught my attention, and I researched on it on the Internet, read books, and that’s how I learnt more about it in order to come up with ideas for the figurines. I don’t know all that much about the religion as such.
What has been your most memorable work so far—something that has given you maximum creative satisfaction?
I think that would have to be the Rama-Sita. There was Ganesha as well, but Ganesha had already been interpreted in several ways, so people already loved Ganesha as an endearing mythological figure that had been reinterpreted in several ways. With the Rama-Sita, interpreting it in porcelain figurines was particularly exciting.
Is there any particular piece other than the Hindu figures that you hold close to your heart?
That would have to be the Egyptian boat figurine—the Queen Of The Nile. It has everything—in terms of design, craftsmanship, skill and technique.
What are you working on currently?
I’m currently working on a porcelain interpretation of Laxman and Hanuman.
What is the process of creating a figurine, from start to finish?
Once there’s an idea, it starts with sketching it, putting it on paper. I’m not the only one involved. There are others’ ideas and inputs, and other expertise involved too. The art is mine; the others contribute towards completing it, as and when required.
How do you express your creativity besides sculpting?
I work on 3D animation as a hobby. It’s related to what I do—creating 3D figures—but it’s virtual in this case.
Besides figurines, do you also work on other porcelain items?
It really depends on the requirement. If I need to contribute towards creating them at any stage, I work on lamps.
How was your experience in India?
It’s definitely been a positive experience and I am taking back a lot from everything I’ve seen here.
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