National Replica School is situated on the main Colombo - Kandy Highway in a picturesque location in the village of Bataleeya in Pasyala famous for its roadside sale of Cashew nuts. This is the only state managed institution in the country that ensures authentic, quality and immaculately produced artefact replicas.
The National Replica School is managed by the Central Cultural Fund under the Ministry of Education. Its main objective is to replicate images in different forms of art that includes paintings, sculptures and carvings predominantly of Sri Lanka’s past that represents our rich civilization.
- To conduct special training courses in art, sculpture and carving giving special emphasis on making replicas of artefacts
- To highlight the ancient traditions and historical values of our country in the international arena by promoting these replicas overseas
- To ensure that tourists who visit our country receive authentic, high quality replicas with real value
- To prevent the illegal smuggling of antiques out of Sri Lanka by reproducing and making them available at sales centres for collectors of antiques
- To generate more employment opportunities in the cultural sector in order to achieve the above objectives
- To empower youth craftspeople who are talented in artistic expressions
The Production Unit of the National Replica School focuses on reproducing authentic, high quality replicas in different media such as cement, fibreglass, terra cotta, brass, bronze, ceramic, wood and stone. The Antiquities Replica Centre caters to the international and local market. It also undertakes orders to construct special creations like portraits, souvenirs, statues etc.
A sample of special models and replicas completed by the professional craftspeople of the Production Unit:
- In 2006 the Olympic Lamp at the Sugathadasa Stadium in Colombo. (9 ft. in height)
- Model of Galvihara Complex of Polonnaruwa at Rankothvihara, Palmadulla in 2007
- Replica of Abhayagiri Samadi Buddha Statue of Anuradhapura in solid Dolomite stone presented to China by HE, The President of Sri Lanka commemorating the 50th year of alliance between Sri Lanka & China in 2006-2007
- A collection of artefact replicas for the Exhibition of Sri Lankan Heritage in Japan held in 2008
- Special Oil Lamp in Brass lit by the Heads of 8 member states at the 15th SAARC summit held in Colombo in 2009
- The Special models & artefact replicas of Maritime Archaeology Museum, Galle in 2009 – 2010
This unit conducts training courses in art, sculpture and carvings for a selected group of talented young people with special emphasis on making replicas of artefacts while retaining the original form and quality. Thus, it encourages the youth artists to keep up with these rare and valuable fields of art as a profession and income generating avenue. This training course includes painting, sculpture, brass casting and carving, wood carving, stone carving and ceramic.
When selecting students for the above course, priority is given to children from families of traditional artisans. Central Cultural Fund provides all the raw material required for the students and in addition they receive a monthly allowance during the period of study. The students receive a valuable certificate issued by the Central Cultural Fund after the successful completion of the course. In appreciation of this training course the National Apprentice and Technical Training Authority, also issues a certificate to the students that complete the course.
During the past few years, past students of Antiquities Replica Centre were adjudged winners at the National level exhibitions of Arts & Crafts that was organized by the National Crafts Council. In addition, all the instructors & craftspeople who hold appointments at the Antiquities Replica Centre are its past pupils.