Ram Rati - Pottery Artisan
Ram Rati, an inhabitant of Haryana, a National Awardee artisan; under National Handicrafts Programme, Govt. of India, was demonstrating her skill in shaping pottery of customers’ choice from dough of clay by rotating the wheel manually.
We met her at Dilli Haat in a National Handicrafts Exhibition where both were demonstrating their traditional craftsmanship in creating wonderful clay arts.
Pottery is one of the oldest human inventions by moulding clay in the form of dough and then shaped it like a vessel or any other decorative object manually or moving on a wheel, using their inherent skill, dry it open sunlight or fired on open chula with glaze material to improve surface finish and aesthetic. Decorative works are also done with the ethos of local culture.
Pottery has an ancient history in Indian subcontinent and it is one of the most tangible and iconic elements of regional art. Pottery art has been well accepted as one of the most beautiful forms of expression. Evidence of Pottery art has been traced in the early settlements of Mehrangarh from Indus valley civilization. The ancient pottery of any country speaks a lot about the civilization of the society in that place. Potteries are either made on wheels or manually. Pottery of any place has its own uniqueness. Pottery is made in India at various locations like Kangra and Andreta in Himachal Pradesh, Pokhran in Rajasthan, Meerut and Harpur in UP, Kutch in Gujarat, Jhaijjar in Haryana, Birbhum in West Bengal and Manipur. Artisans’ skill plays an important role to incorporate unique feature.
The antique pottery is famous worldwide and a large number of tourists always choose it as a souvenir, while visiting a tourist spot at various locations in India as it offers a glimpse of local culture. A small video on unique skill of craftsman is given below to have an understanding on it. A small interaction was also held with the artisan during the event.
Tourists may avail the opportunity to have on hand experience of artistic skills. I also had an experience, shaping a small pot on the potter’s wheel. It was really amazing.
- Sattanurupa Saha