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Riding high on terracotta horses at a global fair

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Dexterous: Artisan Rengasamy working on a terracotta of Iyyanar Horse at a festival in Japan.
Dexterous: Artisan Rengasamy working on a terracotta of Iyyanar Horse at a festival in Japan.

M. Balaganessin

Aranthangi artisans display talent to the appreciation of fellow craftsmen

PUDUKOTTAI: For the traditional artisans Rengasamy and Ramiah Thangiah of a coastal village near Aranthangi in the district, it was a rare opportunity to participate in the International Woodfire festival, currently on at Goshogawara in Japan.

They conducted a demonstration in which they explained the intricacies of making numerous terracotta idols, including a couple of the popular ‘Iyyanar’ horse each of over two meters in height.

“Artisans from several parts of the world were enthralled to have a glimpse of this ancient art of India,” said Mr. Rengasamy over telephone. Pointing out that a number of artisans in Pudukottai district were skilled in the art of making ‘Iyyanar horse’ idols of terracotta, he however, said that this was a dying art.

Mr. Ramiah Thangiah delivered a lecture on the significance of ancient art and culture in India.

The Goshogawara International Woodfire Festival is a ceramic art festival that is held each year in Goshogawara City, Aomori Prefecture in Japan since 2002.

The festival focuses on the exchange of ceramic art technology, culture, and has been fostering intercultural understanding and friendship. A total of 15 ceramic artistes have been participating from Australia, Belgium, Canada, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, Romania, Turkey, Uganda, and the United States during this year’s festival.

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