From zero to hero. This perfectly describes Gusti Ngurah Dalem Ramadi’s work. A 24 years-old artist from Tampaksiring, Gusti successfully created a stunning sculpture of a Balinese Dancer by using bamboo sticks and coconut thatch only.
Gusti claims he paid only about 5.000 Rupiah for each bulk of coconut thatch used for the sculpture. People were amazed by his skill as an artist, and soon enough, he became a media sensation.
Finding out about his capabilities, he was honored by the local government to create the statue of Anak Agung Agung Anglurah Ketut Karangasem (I Gusti Bagus Jelantik), the last King of Karangasem, which later will be crowned as the icon of 379th anniversary of Amlapura – capital city of Karangasem.
This time, he only used woven bamboo to create his masterpiece. With the help of 10 of his friends, it took Gusti only one and a half months to complete the statue.
Although he’s incredibly talented, Gusti has never admitted talent comes with ease. He mentioned the last bamboo structure was incredibly difficult to complete. But he was able to finish the project without many references on how the king himself looks, while still managing to make the sculpture looking extremely similar with the original character.
The statue is made of about 150 carefully-selected bamboo poles. 2.5 meters (8 ft) high and 4 meters (13 ft) wide, the king’s statue will be the icon of the city’s anniversary.