Homes and gardens

Traditional sky lamps are getting a boost this Deepavali

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Learn to craft a lamp this season

The skill of making goodu deepas or sky lamps that light up the nights during Deepavali seems to be dying. Markets are flooded with newer, jazzy lamp models that take away from the romance of handmade lamps.

However, a few youngsters are determined to keep this art form alive and are promoting the joy that accompanies a festive project involving the whole family.

“I remember when I was young, my father and elder brother would prepare our goodu deepas using material like bamboo slivers, twine, homemade glue and crepe paper. It would be a three-day affair and the ladies of the house would stop from their household chores to monitor the progress,” remembers Raviraj Kotekani, a master sky lamp maker.

“Lamp making was part of the main event then, and shopping for coloured paper was on par with procuring ingredients for sweets and fireworks,” adds Pranesh Kudroli, a traditional sky lamp enthusiast.

Traditional sky lamps are getting a boost this Deepavali

“There are standards to be followed where math and craft meet. One can choose between 4, 8 or 12-framed structures; shapes like rectangles, squares or triangles. Every twig of bamboo or rattan has to be prepared with care and measured. Even the thread used for binding has to be chosen with care so it doesn’t snap under pressure. Glass paper can be used so the bulb, holder and the wire are seen. Youngsters today may find them crude, but that is how the traditional goodu deepas looked,” they say.

Ravi, Pranesh and few others have taken it upon themselves to visit schools and neighbourhood areas to train children and adults in the art of making traditional goodu deepas.

Traditional sky lamps are getting a boost this Deepavali

Harsha D’Souza, an art enthusiast, thrilled at their efforts has organised a workshop on goodu deepa making at his art gallery in Kadri. “If this art form is not brought to light, it might be lost to us forever. I am sure a workshop on the making of these lamps will be highly appreciated,” says Harsha.

Pranesh and his friends want to take their art to nearby towns too. “We have already exhibited our art in Karkala, Moodbidri and a few other places in Mangaluru taluk. We would want to take it to neighbouring districts and Bengaluru and Mysuru,” Pranesh said.

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Printable version | Dec 13, 2019 7:16:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/homes-and-gardens/traditional-sky-lamps-are-getting-a-boost-this-deepavali/article29786161.ece

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