Monkey Skull, Rhesus Macaque Life-Cast, Purified Recycled White Bronze (Made in NYC)
This is a life cast of an adult Rhesus Macaque skull. It is 5 inches long (12.7 cm) and 3 inched across the top of the skull (7.6). This piece was lost wax cast in purified recycled bronze. It weighs approx 2 lbs.
I know you are going to think I’m making this up but I actually found the original skull in a cave in Hampi, Karnataka, South India.
I had a real run in with the Macaque in Beneres. This man had a small hostel and the choice room was on the roof. But he wouldn’t rent it to just anyone. He had a satellite dish up there. He was the rudimentary cable service for the neighborhood. He also taught yoga ( yeah I know…)
Anyway, in order to stay up there, you had to agree to keep the troop of monkeys off the dish. He provided a broom stick for the monkey duty and a discount. The room was amazing with views down to the burning ghats and of course the whole roof.
Alright, I’m 6’4 and at the time ( this was pre typhoid episode) more on that in another listing, I was a strapping 190 lbs. I figured I could handle the monkeys. The first salvo from my new charge came that evening. A group of 4 of the big Macaques led by a pretty big guy strolled up on the roof and looked me over before taking a signal interrupting seat on the metal dish.
I hauled out the stick and dragged it across the roof speaking to them directly as they eyed me coolly. I asked nicely and then banged on the metal wash basin and they sauntered off the dish and onto another roof. Round one was mine.
Well, my victory was of course short lived. They came for me in my sleep. So I had my various adventures in the ancient city. I had been ushered into dark Kali poojhas by clear eye fanatics, had been invited to a few burning funerals and drank deeply of the bhang lassi (look it up). As a counter-balance, it is also where I seriously began to study yoga which I am grateful for still.
Oh yes, the monkeys. So one evening I was laying asleep in the heat of the evening when I was awakened by a movement in my room. As part of my yoga, I had taken to eating only fruit. I came to discover that there is a reason that monkeys are always associated with bananas. I awoke to a large monkey casually sitting on a chair with one arm draped over the back. She looked at me and held up my bunch of bananas and calmly peeled one open. I was pissed. I reached for the stick and as I did I heard a shriek from the other end of the room. The male held up my shoulder bag and stood in the doorway. There were about six more standing at the ready behind him. It was clear. The bananas or the bag. Monkeys are smart.
It wouldn’t be for another six months in India when I was studying for the Burmese Buddhist monks that I would value the lesson. They teach of calming the monkey mind that is constantly bouncing from thought to thought and focusing on what is important. The silence of non-thought is the real goal. In a cave, alone in the dark something told to reach behind me above my head. The skull was right above me where I sat.
It would be 20 years before I would make a metal cast of this piece. It was a real challenge to get it to work. Steve Nusbaughm at AJC made the first mold. Keith Keary spent a few days re-working the wax and Frank Ballanti Casting and his crew put all their enthusiasm into it to get it to come out just right.
This piece takes up a lot of space in it’s own flask. It is priced fairly for what it takes to cast it. It’s really a pretty amazing thing to own.
Please allow me 10 business days to cast and finish this piece for you.