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Monthly Archives: February 2018

  • Artisans’ Day to be Observed on March 5

    As part of its consolidated plan to revive the Indian craft industry, the Tamil Nadu government has decided to observe March 5 as Artisans’ Day. A fund of Rupees 35 lakh has been earmarked for the occasion which will see an exhibition of handmade products throughout the state. This exhibition, called the Craft Bazaar will be inaugurated by Minister for Rural Industries, Thiru P. Benjamin on 24th February with a display cum sale of authentic Indian handlooms, handicrafts, textiles, jewelry, paintings etc to create awareness among the general public about the revival of the Indian handicraft industry. The exhibition will culminate in an award ceremony on 8th March wherein prizes will be distributed to the best among 2 lakh artisans currently in the state. The occasion will be graced by the Honourable CM of Tamil Nadu, Mr. E. Palaniswami.

    Poompuhar Artisans DayPoompuhar Artisans Day MarchRecently, the government through its handicraft wing, Poompuhar, established an e-repository for artisans. The e-repository is one of a kind online directory for artisans to register themselves along with their specialties, socioeconomic profiles and images/videos of their products. This innovative initiative was taken with the aim of bringing artisans to the forefront and providing a platform for them to be directly accessible to the public. A fund of Rupees 1 crore from the State Innovation Fund was allocated to this cause.

    Portal for ArtisansPoompuhar has been continuously exploring innovative avenues to promote Indian handicrafts, such as installing a 3D printing installation at the Design Research and Development Centre in Chennai, and a Craft Cafe which serves healthy, home-like meals in a cafe generously adorned with select Poompuhar idols and statues.

  • 10 Popular Indian Handicrafts That Make the Best Souvenirs

    India is a captivating confluence of geography, culture, and tradition that captures every tourist's imagination. But, as all tourists know, every journey comes to an end eventually. Here is a list of ten popular Indian handicrafts you could acquire as souvenirs from your visit to this unique and beautiful country –

    1) Polished Metal Mirror

    Hundreds of years ago, native craftsmen invented the polished metal mirror. Known locally as the tarantula candid, this ornament is made by the bronze-smiths of India and can be found easily in this region of the world.

    2) Coir ornaments

    Simple yet elegant, the well-knitted coir ornaments made in Kerala will add a touch of style and sophistication to any living room or office. The decorative pieces are crafted by the women of the coir village. Other products made from this material include hammocks, wall hangings and blinds.

    3) Puppets

    Puppetry is an Indian tradition that has been kept alive for countless generations. The art of puppetry in this country has been maintained in the Nat community of Rajasthan. Their unique puppets are made of softwood which is carved and decorated with fabrics made within the state.

    4) Woodcarvings

    These items are a little expensive buthave theincomparable quality of design and shapewhich is hard to find anywhere else. Sandalwood sculptures can be found in states such as Kerala, and usually, depict common figures from Hinduism such as the God and Goddess.

    5) Paintings

    The tradition of painting in India is rooted in ancient practices such as Kalamezhuthu and the murals and frescoes of colonial-era churches. Poompuhar store also displays various famous forms of painting such as Thanjavur Paintings, Jute Painting etc.

    Shop for this BALAJI WITH LAKSHMI THANJAVUR PAINTING - Click Here Shop for this BALAJI WITH LAKSHMI THANJAVUR PAINTING - Click Here

    6) Chanderi Saree

    The Chanderi saree is one of the best examples of handloom weaving in India. The lustre and transparency of the materials used to create this attire make it exceptionally better than other handmade fabrics in India.

    7) Ornamental Bangles

    These are rigid bracelets, made from gold, silver, glass or plastic. Bangles are of great significance for the married women in India as it is considered inappropriate for a married woman to be bare armed in public. They make great souvenirs as they are small, durable and affordable.

    8) Traditional Papier Mache

    The art of paper Mache is widely practised in India. The artisans of Kashmir are particularly known for the exceptional quality of the vases and models made using this method. Papier Mache pieces usually have bright coloured finishing and highly elaborate design.

    Shop For This KAMADHENU - Click Here Shop For This KAMADHENU - Click Here

    9) Handmade fibre products

    Indian artisans are highly skilled craftsmen known for the quality and durability of their handmade fibre products. Artisans obtain fibre from locally available plant residues such as pineapple leaves and banana stems. It is then treated and used to create purses, laptop bags and wall hangings.

    10) Silver craft

    Silverware is a speciality of the artisans of Kachchh. They use light embossing enhanced by scrapping and etching to produce elegant functional pieces of art such as cigarette boxes and ittar-danis (perfume bottles).

    So next time, while travelling to India, do not forget to collect your souvenir to remember the trip!! Poompuhar also offers all valid documents to ensure that the overseas customers go through a hassle-free customs process at the airport.

  • Maha Shivratri

    Maha Shivratri, translated as the great night of Shiva, is a festivity observed once every year to honour the God Shiva. Among the dualist Tantric Shaiva exegetical traditions, the festival is referred to as Har-Ratri or Herath for simplicity. There is a Shivaratri in every solar-luni month of the Hindu calendar system. This starts on the 13th night and continues to the following day. Each year towards the end of the winter season, just before the arrival of spring, Maha Shivratri is celebrated.

    Shop for this  Rose Wood Panel Shiva Parvathy - Click Here Shop for this Rose Wood Panel Shiva Parvathy - Click Here

    It is a significant event in the Hindu religion, this particular festival is characterised by solemnity and is meant to signify the triumph over darkness and ignorance in the world and in life itself. The festival is commemorated through fasting, yoga, chanting prayers and remembrance of Shiva. Believers also meditate on virtues and ethics like the discovery of Shiva, forgiveness, honesty and self-control.  Truly passionate devotees remain awake for the entire night. Others may embark on pilgrimages to jyotirlingas or pay a visit to one of the temples of Shiva.

    Shop for this Soft Stone Lingam - Click Here Shop for this Soft Stone Lingam - Click Here

    Festivities

    The celebration includes the maintenance of a Jagran, a vigil and prayer for the entire night because Hinduism marks it a period of transcendence from ignorance and darkness in the world and in one's self through Shiva. Devotees make offerings of milk, fruits, sweets and leaves to the god Shiva, some take part in fasting with a Vedic worship of Shiva. In temples dedicated to Shiva, the revered mantra of Shiva is recited for the whole day. The Maha Shivaratri festival actually lasts for three or ten days depending on the Hindu solar-luni calendar.

    Shop For this Brass Rishabam - Click Here Shop For this Brass Rishabam - Click Here

    Significance

    Scholars believe that Maha Shivaratri was the day that Shiva consumed the world's poisonous negativity to save it from destruction. This festival is mentioned in many ancient Indian texts especially the Linga Purana and Skanda Purana. These texts present varying explanations for the festival, but all call for reverence and fasting in remembrance of Shiva. There are different legends that explain the importance of the Mahashivratri festival.

    According to Shaivism, it marks the day that Shiva performed the celestial dance of preservation, destruction and creation. The sacrifices and prayers offered by worshipers join with this dance and commemorate Shiva everywhere. Another legend suggests that the festival marks the night that Parvati was wed to Shiva. A third account states that making sacrifices and offerings serves as atonement for previous sins and creates a new chance for individuals to walk a path of virtue so that they can reach liberation.

    Poompuhar wishes all our readers a very blessed Maha Shivratri. Check out our collection to select your favourite Shiv Pratima to celebrate this auspicious festival.

    Shop for this Shivalingam - Click Here Shop for this Shivalingam - Click Here
  • The State of The Indian Craft Industry

    The crafts sector of India’s economy employs over twenty million people, and it is second after the agriculture sector. Handicrafts, rightly described as the craft of the people, are a major source of income and employment for the people of India. The handicrafts sector is a home-based industry. This kind of work does not require extensive investment, training or machinery for production to begin.

    Image Credit - Newindianexpress.com Image Credit - Newindianexpress.com

    Craftsmen typically use ingenuity and raw materials existing within their surroundings to produce ornaments, fabrics or ceramics that can be sold. Many pastoral and agricultural communities within the country rely on traditional craft skills as a source of backup income in times of poor crop yields, famine, lean harvests or drought. Such traditional skills, handed down for generations, also constitute a vital source of income for women and are often the only way that communities can survive natural disasters.

    All these facts prove that the Indian craft industry vital component of the nation's economy, but though they are accurate, it is also true that the craft industry is in a state of decline. With the most recent evidence of this being the plight of the potters and sculptors of Bengaluru, considered by many to be the heart of pottery in India.

    The potters and sculptors worry that they could soon lose pottery town due to a decline in the market, and a scarcity of raw materials. This concern is well founded, the world today is one characterised by mass production, and economies of scale have resulted in a dramatic decline in price. New materials have further changed the industry, mass-produced products are stronger and more durable than natural ceramics. This is an unfortunate truth that we all must deal with.

    On a more positive note, there are still opportunities that craftspeople such as the potters and sculptors of pottery town can exploit to sustain their trade. Handcrafted wares are not cheap. Consider this, if there is even a little demand for a handcrafted product, why would it be cheaply priced.  Since it is unique and one of a kind, consumers should buy it at a higher price. Craftspeople should take advantage of current developments in internet marketing to explore the new market. Web-based artisan stores such as the E-repository launched by Poompuhar could provide much-needed exposure for handicraft makers.

    Though technology has caused some of the Indian handicraft industry's problems, it has also created many opportunities that should be exploited to ensure that it remains vibrant and profitable.

  • Benefits of joining an E-Repository for the Artist

    Promoting art in this era, can be a little challenging for any individual. The average person is normally too occupied with the hustle and bustle of life to find the time for anything but a little rest and relaxation after a hard day's work. As a result, only the truly passionate can make the time to actually visit an exhibition. Coupled with stiff competition, it becomes really hard for the individual artist to make ends meet.

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    Fortunately, advertising strategies for art have grown rapidly in the last few decades, and today, the internet is the newest and most popular avenue for the selling and auction of art. For art lovers, it may simply be a quick and convenient way to spend money on a piece of art but for the modern artist, it is a truly exciting development.

    Why?You ask!! Because it opens a vast and insatiable market.

    Modern art consumers and enthusiasts typically prefer electronic repositories because they have the opportunity to inspect a much greater number of art pieces at their own pace, all this can’t be done in traditional art galleries which can display only a limited number pieces and can operate for limited time of day. This level of discretion also comes with its own advantages such as –there is less exposure for the sellers and buyers, the price remains a secret, and there is hardly any chance that the auction could fail.

    For emerging artists, the repository provides an opportunity to connect with loyal clients. A web gallery that has worked tirelessly to build a proper listing of artists definitely has the market for their work. Such a repository could also convince collectors to purchase the works of new artists.

    Endorsement by a reputable gallery that has nation-wide coverage is a vital step for any artist interested in building a professional career. The art world is a highly competitive environment where the individual with the most exposure has a greater advantage over others in the same field. Representation by an established web-based repository is an important prerequisite for artists seeking to connect with potential buyers.

    Online galleries are typically used by collectors with large budgets. These individuals are usually willing to pay large sums of money for good art. What this means for the artist is that the value of their work could increase dramatically in an instant. This doesn’t mean that the work was less valuable before, just that its perceived value has increased.

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