Your Subtitle text

Crafts of India


Crafts are the indigenous creation of rural folk of villages and small towns. Art and craft have  been with man since his early existence. They are the result of centuries of patient experience of man under many circumstances.  These have a tradition that remain unchanged and unaffected and have been passed down from generation to generation. Traditional forms and decorations may be transformed to meet taste and needs of people of that  time. They add variety by giving different patterns, designs and colours. These hand made articles have a beauty of their own. Today, in most places handicrafts have either died out or, are in a stage of decay due to emergence of the machine product.

             History of craft is not only the story of man’s increasing skill with material and rising power over the natural environment, it provides in addition, evidence of the way in which society itself has developed. Like art, crafts too reflect evolution of human society. Symbols and motifs were invariably added to convey the full expression. The meaning of symbols would vary from place to place. Symbols were freely employed in decorating the hand work on wood, pottery, textile.

There are three historic stages-
1. There was the time when every thing was craft. All processes of making were hand processes and every thing made whether utilitarian, ritual or decorative was essentially a craft object.
2. From renaissance onward it is possible to distinguish two further stages of development. There was a separation between the idea of craft and that of fine arts. The latter is regarded superior. Fine art thrived under royal patronage. The glory of an empire is seen reflected in the works of art and craft. They made intricate designs carved delicate figures, painted, in bright colours, sculptured pieces and patterned mosaics.
3. Later, with industrial revolution there arrived a separation between a craft object and a thing made by a machine – an industrial product. 

          Hand made articles have a beauty of their own.  Craftsmen often define themselves through the skills they acquire and the uses to which they put them. In the processes of selection a high priority was given to those works that are unique in form or content and posed a challenge for their makers. For some years now, handicrafts have either died out or in a stage of decay due to the machine product.