Abdul Pottery Kutch

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1. In Bhuj a friend told me to visit Abdul’s pottery shop at Khavda i.e. less than an hour’s drive from Tent City. Khavda is a small town close to the Rann of Kutch. Products are on display in two rooms. Left pic shows his mother receiving an award. Second pic is of Narendra Modi.

2. More products. Abdul Bhai speaks English pretty well – heard him speak to the many foreigners who flock to see and buy his work. His forefathers also made pottery and migrated from Sindh a few hundred years ago.

3. What I liked about Abdul was his pleasing personality. He packs products very well, said it is packed such that the pottery does not break in transit. Was told he couriers products to every part of the world. They craft a variety of vessels for eg matka for water storage, plates, diyas, boxes and kulhad to keep buttermilk.

4. Lamp shades. This album has Abdul’s products, how they are made and Ajrak printing cloth also in Khavda. Abdul said his was the only family still engaged in pottery, others become drivers, labourers etc. Those who wish have to transfer money electronically to his bank account.

5. His mother at work. Process is – get mud from a specific lake area near their village. It is called ‘Rann ki Mitti’. Important it must have no salt. First make the mud into a powder. Next it goes through a sieve. Then put water and mix. If they are making a big pot than add horse a gobar i.e. dung. Mixture made and kept for 2 days. Then Amma mixes as you see in pic.

6. It is given shape by putting on wheel as you see Abdul doing. The man behind is giving it shape. In today’s lifestyles we use more of steel & plastic so craftsmen like Abdul having a tough time. By buying pottery across the country we can support these highly talented artisans of Bharat.

7. Then it is put in container and kept in sunlight for drying so becomes hard. After that use Kutch paper to give it a finish. Any errors in caption please mail.

8.“They use red, black & white clay-based paints to decorate each piece of pottery with distinct community specific designs.Vessels are coated with a thin wash of geru (red colour),a type of soil (ocher/umber), & black-and-white dots & stripes are also made with natural materials.”They keep stone in water to get stone color. Then baked in a furnace where fuel consists of dry wood & cow dung.

9. Europeans, Abdul, Amma and me. When the English got tough helped Abdul by translating in Hindi. He is a born salesman and very likable. Contacts 91 94275 13585 and 91 99133 59144. To read a good and short article on pottery http://www.khamir.org/crafts/pottery

10. In village Khavda is Bilal Bhai who does Ajrakh Printing work. Since we were there thought let us visit his workshop. Here are a few pictures. Placing the wooden block on cloth.

11.Pics of stoll. Process simply put is. First remove starch from cotton. Then change colour from white to yellow. Print first yellow and then black along with chosen third print. Soak in colour, wash and dry. Again add yellow. Gum and lime painted on white part of cloth. Boil, wash and dry. In case of errors mail me.

12. Loved these salwar suits.

13. Some more salwar suits. All though Kutch found people to be very creative and hard working. Saw similar block printing work at Sanganer near Jaipur. There it was traditionally done by the Chhipa community. Now others started doing – guess to meet increasing demand.

14. Close up. Their contacts village Khavda Kutch. Bilal 91 94275 66313, 91 85112 66313 Faruk 91 94298 10353.