Chhattisgarh, famously known as the Indian ‘Bowl of Rice’, is one of the delightful and large-hearted state of our country. People of this state are known mostly for their credulity, innocence and simplicity. The state is highly revered for its culture and handicrafts, both represent the state and complement each other. in several ways. Like many other states, artists and craftsmen have been creating stories and magic over a thousand years. The handicrafts made by people of this state are unique, but as the world is becoming more digital, the value of their crafts is decreasing day-by-day which is one of the major concerns. So, let’s acquaint ourselves with some of the several Arts and Handicrafts of Chhattisgarh:
Ø Bamboo Art
Bamboo Art or Bamboo Work is done by people in bamboo for the daily use as well as decoration purposes. Some of the regular and well-known items by the local artisans include hunting tools(used for poaching or saving the life from dangerous species), fishing traps(for family and commercial purposes), baskets and agricultural implements.
Ø Wall Painting
Wall Painting is an ancient art form, yet the most famous artists from Chhattisgarh are associated with it. It has a strong link with the rituals of their ancestors. People paint the walls in the occasions such as birth of a child, marriage in their locality, regional festivals and many other occasions. This is an Art in which the floors and walls are painted with the colorsand is done in almost every of the regions.
This is an unexplored craft designed by the artisans, specially in the Regions of Bastar. It is a type of musical instrument which people use for their public occasions. Nowadays, artisans are not too keen to make them as the locales have completely lost their interests in these and showing interests towards newer things.
Found here are jewelry made by the artisans of Chhattisgarh, which tribals used to wear in their daily lives. Whenever any cultural festival, for example, Raj Utsav (majorly organized in capital of the state i.e., Raipur) is celebrated in the state, we get the opportunity to get familiar with the many varieties of ornaments worn by the tribal people, which are completely hand-made. These are available in silver, gold, bronze and mixed metals. Ornaments which people used to wear as a part of their costumes are usually made from cowries, beads and feathers.
Ø Wrought Iron (Loha Shilp)
Wrought Iron or Loha Shilp are used for the making of effigies (for musicians), toys, figurines, candle stands, lamps and deities and other similar products. Scrap Iron (frequently recycled) are taken as a raw material for making of craft products from Wrought Iron. These arts are totally handmade and designed by the artists (usually tribals use these products in their daily lives).
Ø Cotton Fabrics
Cotton Fabrics, as the name suggests, fabrics of the cotton which is made of Kosa thread. These are very famous and eye catching, which remembers the culture of Ancient India. These are made by the Bastar artisans, in which even printing is handmade which is generally done with the natural vegetable dye, obtained from ail, found in the forest areas of Bastar. Due to lack of support and guidance of local residents of Bastar, these amazing crafts didn’t even get exported in most of the districts of Chhattisgarh. Another major reason for the unacceptance of these products is the increasing interest of the people in Western Culture.
Ø Bell Metal (DHOKRA)
Bell Metal, also known as DHOKRA, is a handicraft which is done with lost wax and hollow casting technique. Usually, this form of art is practiced by ‘Ghadwas’ tribes of Bastar and ‘Jharas’ tribes of Raigarh who use Brass and Bronze metals as their main products.
Ø Wood Carvings (KASHTA SHILP)
Wood Carving (or Crafting) is called as KASHTA SHILP by the local peoples. The skill rich artisans carve the wooden ceilings, lintels, doors and many more. Also, they make pipes, windows, sculptures and frames. Several types of woods they used for their handicrafts are Sal, shisham, teak, kikar, dhudi, etc. ‘Badhis’ tribes are professional in this handicraft. These types of arts are rarely available in urban markets, but very often seen in the local markets of rural areas. Also, in the cultural exhibitions, wooden crafts are most commonly available in the form of different shapes.
This is the most pioneering form of art in the whole state Chhattisgarh, which uses the natural colours, obtained from forests and combine with acrylic paint for making it more stabe when applied it in fabric. It is mostly practiced by the women of Jangala district of Chhattisgarh. This is very popular handicraft, as many of the people are familiar about it, but mostly did not preferring tothis form of art, just for the modern trends.
These are some of the mostly known and practiced Handmade arts (Handicrafts), which I tried to highlight you, but there are many more, which we didn’t even hear. The request from my side is very simple, that you should approach to the artisans and buy the handicrafts from them, just to keep them supporting and motivating them to scale their market and engage to many more people. If you are living in Chhattisgarh, then you should definitely buy the handicrafts mentioned by me above. Also, if you are not from Chhattisgarh then whenever you will get the chance to arrive Chhattisgarh, you should definitely become familiar with these crafts. The more we support and encourage them, the more our state as well as our nation will become culturally and economically rich.