Nek Chand worked under cover of darkness for eighteen years, stealing away at the end of his working day as a roads inspector to his secret place – a clearing in the jungle.
It was there that he created the legions of sculpted men and women, imaginary creatures, bears and monkeys, that would compose his magnificent ‘Rock Garden’.
Nek Chand, a humble man, turned his dream into reality through solitary determination.
He scavenged discarded urban debris and transported hand-picked stones from nearby hills on his bicycle, in order to construct the characters that inhabit his realised dream of a kingdom of gods and goddesses.
He carried water in bamboo containers so that his garden would be lush with plants. And he stood up to the city’s bureaucracy when it learned of his clandestine plan that violated local construction regulations and Le Corbusier’s master-plan for India’s new city of Chandigarh.
Nek Chand Recycled Art Bangle Mosaic Bird Rock Garden India – Carol Mitchell
Nek Chand bangle bird jewelry mosaic sculpture india on Flickr – Carol Mitchell
Recycled Bangles Mosaic Art Bird Sculpture Nek Chand India – Ant Smith
While city officials were not always enthusiastic about Chand’s undertaking, today they celebrate it.
It was in 1976, when Nek Chand was 52 years old, after long years of quiet work and struggle, that the Garden was formally opened to the public. Tony Rajer – Nek Chand Foundation