“He who works with his hands is a labourer. He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman. He who works with his hands, his head and his heart is an artist!”
One of my favourite memories of the Rann Utsav trip is the visit to the local village and trying my hands on the wood work art.
The Kutch wooden handicraft and wood carving is famed all over the world. The wood carving in Kutch is closely linked to the cultures across the Thar Desert. The traditional wood carving can be found in all these areas however, each region brings a unique and distinctive style and attitude to their motifs. The carved designs in wood are suggestive of the motifs found in the embroidery styles of that particular region.
The migrations of the Bhatias and Jains brought new styles and designs to Kutch from different parts of India. Ornate floral motifs, birds, animals and human figures are intricately carved into wooden columns, pillars, balconies, ceilings, pigeon-houses, doors and windows.
I tried carving a small wooden case and was quite happy with the finished product but was happier to meet these local artisans. These artists are truly special because they have the gift of creating and inspiring others.