Every creation tells a tale of the place that it comes from. It makes one wonder how distant these cultures have become for the present generation of our country.

On approaching the doorway of the Ernakulam Women’s Association Hall, one can see a plethora of colourfully woven, sculpted, engraved and moulded goodies in varied shapes, sizes and forms.

Though the exhibition is called ‘Orissa Crafts Utsav’, it is a vibrant conglomeration of the unique culture and tradition of many Indian States. Here various artefacts are brought under one roof.

Every creation tells a tale of the place that it comes from. It makes one wonder how distant these cultures have become for the present generation of our country.

The exhibits reveal the skilful artistry of the crafts persons. The artists ability to make their native art adapt to the changing tastes of the people is admirable.

Apart from handicrafts made in Odisha, the exhibition showcases the arts and crafts from Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Karnataka.

The handicrafts from Odisha are special because the artists follow ancient tradition and make them with their own hands. The artworks include palm leaf writing, where intricate designs are engraved on a dried palm leaf using a sharp pen or stylus like object. There are pure line engravings and engravings with colour fillings. Scenes from Hindu mythology are mostly engraved.

Other attractions from Odisha include Patachitra, paintings made on specially treated cloth or patas and hung inside temple compounds, and Appliqué Art, a temple art form made by the artisans of Pipli, a village 40 kms from Puri.

Beautiful wall hangings made by stitching coloured clothing in the shape of animals, birds, and flowers; coconut carvings; papier-mâché art; and metal works called silver filigree, where silver is drawn into fine wires to form ornaments are also on display.

Durable and economical sarees like Sambalpuri, Bomkai, Chandheri cotton, Lehariya, Tassar silk and silk are available. Bandhini dress materials from Rajasthan and Khadi kurtas from Meerut make the handloom section vibrant with each textile having an individuality of its own.

They are characterised by bold and unusual patterns, subtle blend of colours and unique tie and dye effects.

The aroma of scented supari, imli sweets and mouth fresheners from Rajasthan would tempt any customer to grab a handful and indulge in its sweet, tingling taste. There are some suparis specially made for diabetic people.

The array of exquisite jewellery set in bright and happy hues provoke customers to take a peek. They would surely end up bagging a whole lot of it! Beautifully designed and painted ear rings made of clay, Hyderabadi pearl necklaces and other precious stones fill the line in these stalls.

Reviving lost traditions and cultures through artefacts is what such exhibitions achieve. They also remind every visitor that India does have a rich culture and tradition. The exhibition is a collection of reminiscences about the past. The items on display remind one that it’s all ‘Made in India’. The exhibition being held at the Women’s Association Hall in Dewans Road, Ernakulam, will end on July 15.

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