Heritage Craft in Crisis: a Case Study of Flexible Brass Craft of Bellaguntha, Ganjam District of Odisha

Santosh Kumar Jha[1]

  Volume 6, Number 2, 2016 I Full Text PDF

Article DOI:  10.21659/chitro.v6n2.04

Received on May 28, 2016.
Accepted on June 17, 2016.
Published on July 14, 2016.


For a researcher, studying the dynamics of a traditional handcraft and indigenous knowledge becomes interesting during the research identification process, especially when a study turns into a comparative one between what actually s/he has personally witnessed in its applied area and its pre-existing insufficiently documented database. Sometimes, these documents are supportive but just bear few insufficient bullet points with some of those being contraindicating too. On the other hand, the existing status of a craft includes indigenous craft techniques, hereditary knowledge, work culture, materials, tools, line of end products, socio-cultural importance of craft, associated folklore roots and other ingredients, which represents an overall set of ‘evidenced legacy’ of any traditional heritage. The present documented status of flexible brass craft of Bellaguntha is also suffering from above mentioned situation. This paper covers some of the interesting cases found by this author, during his studies of pre-existing documents, concerned with this craft and presents the dynamics of product designing. The purpose of the study is to conduct a systematic documentation to enrich the database about this craft for its manifold benefit.

Keywords: Traditional Crafts, Flexible brass craft of Bellaguntha, Kansari, Thathera community, Metal Crafts of India.

[1] Santosh Kumar Jha is working as a Senior Faculty and teaches Product and Accessories Design subjects to graduation and postgraduate students in the Footwear Design and Development Institute of the Ministry of Commerce and Industries, Noida (India). Presently he is pursuing PhD degree program in Cultural Studies discipline of the Utkal University of Culture in Bhubaneswar with concentration in the area of Traditional Crafts and Product Design.