Dakshina Kali – a tribute fountain pen to the Mother of all living beings; the master of death, time and change, from Constellations88
The fountain pen has long been used as a canvas, to depict religious motifs, especially in India. Ganesha (the Lord of removing obstacles), Lakshmi (the Goddess of Wealth and good fortune), Hanuman (the companion of Lord Rama) and Balaji (the Lord of Manifestation) being the most portrayed figures in such pens. And the reasons are not far to seek – these pens are collected more as ornaments than writing instruments; they are, as fountain pens go frightfully expensive and (perhaps therefore) make excellent gifts, especially in those parts of the country where Lakshmi is often visibly more popular than her sister, Saraswati (the Goddess of Learning) whose weapon of choice, the fountain pen actually is. Besides, these “exotic” fountain pens have a ready market in the West, where they diligently perform the task of being conversation pieces. That again, is perhaps reason why such fountain pens feature works that so closely resemble those of Raja Ravi Verma, who is celebrated for fusing European academic art with purely Indian sensibilities and iconographies.
The Dakshina Kali fountain pen from Constellations88 blasts through all these well laid out plans of mice and men. For Kali (also known as Dakshina Kālikā) is considered to be the Master of death, time and change. She is the ultimate manifestation of Shakti and is the mother of all living beings. She destroys evil in order to protect the innocent. Kali has been worshipped by devotional movements and tantric sects variously as the Divine Mother, Mother of the Universe, Adi Shakti, or Parvati. Shakta (from Śāktaḥ, lit. doctrine of energy, power) and Tantric sects additionally worship her as the ultimate reality or Brahman. The style in which the Universal Mother has been depicted is also in keeping with the overall theme and is a very welcome deviation from the oft-repeated overkill of feel-good familiarity, of the loving obedience of Vaishnavism.
Says Nisha Singhi, the lady behind the Constellations88 brand, one who conceptualised this ode to the primordial power and had it created, “the pen is symbolically painted blue from which emerges the face that exterminates the evil to protect the innocent. The cap features a subtle variant, but in a red background which is done to highlight the blend of fierceness with that of subtlety”.
The making of the pen, like the rituals that invoke the blessings of the Goddess is a complex and painstaking process, taking as long as 9 weeks to complete “first the barrel and cap is created from imported Italian resin of the finest quality, which is treated with a solution that creates a surface that is rough enough to be painted upon. Then a basic coat of white paint is applied, which has to be thoroughly dried before the actual painting can begin. A special mix of acrylic and oil paints are used as the colouring medium, which is applied with brushes scrupulously, in a backbreakingly painstaking process. After the painting is completed, a further coat of crystal lacquer is applied which acts as a protective layer apart from imparting the sheen on the surface.”
The pen, in keeping with its overall look and feel is fitted with Gold plated steel nib, ebonite feed and a gold PVD treated clip. It comes fitted with an imported converter and is capable of being used as a cartridge filler as well, accepting standard international cartridges. Needless to say, like all Nisha Singhi creations, the pen, even sans the art it portrays, is a well-crafted one. It balances superbly, writes with a wet flair and is as technically perfect as it can be.
The Nisha Singhi, owner of the Constellations88 and the Vazir brands of fountain pens is not only ubiquitous but have quietly become synonymous with the art and craft of fountain pen making in India. She is the moving spirit behind the India Pen Show, is always proactive in breaking new grounds, has an enviable presence in the social media driving new initiatives, is never afraid of breaking the existing mould and maintain an excellent rapport with her buyers and average pen lovers alike. The Dakshina Kali pen is indeed a bold departure from the confines of mediocrity and I am sure that fountain pen lovers will embrace it with the reverence that it demands.
For More information contact: https://constellations88.com/