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Bankura district produces a number of terracotta handicrafts, the most popular being the Bankura horse. It has been internationally commended for its elegance and unique charm.
Originally used for village rituals, it now adorns drawing rooms across the world as symbols of Indian folk-art.
Bankura Horse is the Logo of All India Handicrafts.
The principal centres where the terracotta horses and elephants are produced are Panchmura, Rajagram, Sonamukhi and Hamirpur in Bankura district of West Bengal.
Each place has its distinct local style. The Panchmura-style of pottery is considered the best and the finest of all the four types.
Bankura’s terracotta handicraft is an internationally popular art- form. It is believed that the tradition of making terracotta crafts started from the Panchmura region of Bankura in West Bengal. The craftsmen those days used to inscribe the temple walls with the art-work.
Traditional terracotta products like statues, flower vase,, home décor items, pots and jewellery are common in any Bengali household.
The artists of Panchmura make a wide variety of items ranging from depiction of daily chores like flower picking or fishing, to landscapes like tea garden, park, mountains or streams to artistic depiction of local festivities like Charak etc.
The artisans these days also make decors and utility products like lamp, tub, crockery, tiles etc. that are in great demand in urban markets.
Bankura horse is the terracotta horse, produced in Panchmura village in Bankura district in the Indian state of West Bengal. It has been internationally commended for its elegance and unique charm.
Originally used for village rituals, it now adorns drawing rooms across the world as symbols of Indian folk-art. It is the Logo of All India Handicrafts.
Terracotta horses and elephants of Bishnupur :
Terracotta clay craft has been the symbol of man’s first attempt at craftsmanship, just as the potter’s wheel was the first machine invented to use the power of motion for a productive purpose.
For ages, civilizations have been dated and assessed by the degree of skill and beauty displayed by the earthenware found in excavations.
Because of its universal appeal pottery has often been termed as the lyrics of handicrafts. However, its association with religious rituals has imbibed it with deeper significance.
In India, terracotta traditions are found from the very earliest times. In order to cater to the commercial requirements of the modern global market, the rural India’s potters are often combining the traditional rural art-forms with refined urban tastes to show pieces of elegant terracotta art.