Art and Craft of Assam - An overview | Assam Journal

Art and Craft of Assam - An overview

Assam is one of the promising state of North East India which has many numbers of popular tourist destinations within the region. The state has a rich tradition in Art and Craft which also stands as a key factor that attracts the tourists to the state and which have a high demand in the country and as well as abroad. The state is significantly rich in various craftsman works in some places of the state which are well known in all over the country. Since the time immemorial, it has been known that the weavers, plotters, goldsmiths and bamboo works, wood, cane and the ivory workers have been reflecting their artistic talent and craftsmanship through their works in this media or platform.

The ancient half and full relief sculptures associated with temple art can provide a good example of their artistic skills. The wood carvings of Satra Institutions can claim to be the best specimen of the South East Asian tradition of wood carvings. The Ahom rulers during Ahom Kingdom were also the patrons of the art and craftsmanship and to encourage the craftsman they even brought the expert artisans from outside of the country for creating various items of art.

The Assamese craftsman of the region still retains some of the good works of the past through many such activities such as weaving, Bamboo, Cane, Bell metal, pith, clay and wood works and ivory carvings. These works of the weavers reflects the distinctive colour scheme and artistic design which are the trademarks that belongs to this part of the world. Assam also has the tradition of producing three different types of silk such as that of the Pat, Eri and Muga silk which are very popular within the country as well as in rest of the world.

The Bamboo and Cane crafts makes a major contribution to the material culture of Assam. The artisans of the state prepare various types of cane and bamboo artifacts for day-to-day use and for the purpose of selling it in the market too. At present, the cane and bamboo crafts have received a boast, as these are highly admired by the urban people to use as items of decoration.

Bell metal craft has attained an honorable position in the state which is done in places like the Hajo and Sarthebari under the Kamrup and Barpeta district respectively. The Wood and Ivory carvings were also highly advanced crafts of Ancient Assam. Now the traditional practice of wood carving still exists and can be spotted is some of the Satras in Assam. The Potters of Assam are skilled artisans producing utilitarian like terra-cotta dolls from time immemorial.

The Pith Craft is also found in the Assam and is also widely known and admired. The pith toys of Gauripur and Bordowa in Dhubri and Nagaon district respectively are the good specimens of art and craft of the state. The artisans of Assam are experts in mask making in river island Majuli under Jorhat district. In the tradition of the drawing and painting, Assam has a glorious past. Apart from these, the rock drawing craft found in the Biswanath Ghat area under Sonitpur district reflects the expressive style of line work on the rock.


This post was written by:

Mr.Prasanta - who is the well-wisher and correspondent of Assam Journal.
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