Odisha (Orissa) has an art and craft that are the products of a long historical process in which the spiritual, philosophical and the human dimensions have merged to yield the finest effects of a cultured and civilized life.
Painting, according to some scholars is as old as Odisha’s sculpture. In fact profession-wise, there was originally no distinction between painting and sculpture.
Ikat-that gloriously woven, blurry edged. Gem-coloured design, in gorgeous yarn of silk and cotton has become synonymous with Odisha.
Odisha is a thickly tribal inhabited state, consisting of sixtytwo tribes living in different parts of the state – in the highlands, forests, valleys and in the foot hills. They make their own traditional ethnic cottage and live in it. In order to proclaim the self identity intra groupwise, socially and culturally different tribes live in different places.
The distinctive hand-woven textiles of Odisha (Orissa) in unusual patterns and vibrant colours have supported a thriving cottage industry employing thousands.
The cells attracted men to live there, who decorated these rock shelters with paintings and engravings in various geometrical forms and figures of human and animals.
There are a lot of handicrafts that have been running as the life force in the cultural land of Odisha (Orissa). Some of which include- Patta Chitra, Sand Art, Metal Work, Silver Filigree, Stone Carving and making Puppets and Masks etc.
‘Applique’, which is a French term, is a technique by which the decorative effect is obtained by superposing patches of coloured fabrics on a basic fabric, the edges of the patches being sewn in some form of stitchery.
Brass & Bell Metal
Metal craft is perhaps the single most important craft in terms of the number of artisans engaged in its practice as in its close links with the daily lives of the people of the State.
Of all the handicrafts of Odisha the most unique and the finest, in fact the queen among them, is silver filigree, locally called tarakasi. The craft is localised at Cuttack town and a few villages in Cuttack district.
Horn articles of Odisha are mystical and are blended with a superb fashion design. Their lively appearance, dynamism and animation vie with the real objects of nature – that spells the names of Parlakhemundi and Cuttack.
Lacquer is the refuse of an insect gathered by the tribals in the forests. The Hindu women of Baleshwar and Nowrangpur districts mix it with colours and apply it on small cane boxes made by tribals, and terracotta figures which they make themselves.
This skill has been creatively practised by craftspersons from all over Odisha. Paper, waste cloth and different kinds of natural fibres are soaked and beaten into pulp, then mixed with a variety of seeds and gums for strength and as protection from termites.