Jan 22, 2013

Rediscovering Craft

Design is an awakening. And considering how ruthless we are to our home products (made in India) tags, design intervention has to come in.

My latest experience was with a very unique product that I bought during my journey back to home in Punjab. The train was passing through Rajasthan when a guy comes and asks if I wanted tea in ‘Khullad’ (clay cups). I was amazed that they were using khullads, and also happy to see. Then a lady comes in with these products contained in a self made cloth sack hanging by her neck. 

The product was so charming that I couldn’t resist buying it. And then I asked for the price, “ 15 rupye ka h”, she replied. I paid her Rs.20 for it. Do I sound crazy? Well, have a look as to what I got for 20 bucks.

Feeling it and rattling!

The Beautiful Spiral
The Complete Form

And it was totally worth it. I started imagining how the craftsperson had made it!
And for quite some time, I had no idea as to how it had been done.

Later on when I reached home, I showed it to my parents and grandmother. They knew what it was. They had seen it before. How come I never saw it?

Then I realized what I was holding. I might as well call it antique art since its hardly known to the present generation, which is a big shame for this nation. The very unique craft of this very nation is not known, nor brought forward by the governments. Its time to look at those amazing forms of products. This product is ageless and doesn’t wary with age! I kept looking at it when I held it in my hands. The spiral is so eye catching. And the way it is made is great!

The material they've used it 'Sarkanda', a wild grass that grows in North. You will probably find many references of it with 'Muda/Mudda Craft'. But somehow there are no mentions of the small things that have been made using this material. I now wonder what all possibilities lie ahead with various materials. The grass is cheap and they've used thinner sections of the same to make this.

Great work. I hope to travel to those parts and see them making it live.

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