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India is a country filled with unique culture and traditions. It is a country where various types of art form have flourished from time and time. Every region has its own art and craft culture, for example, Kashmir is famous for its embroidery, silk clothing, Jaipur is famous for its pottery related items, Tamil Nadu is famous for its sculptures and monolithic structures. Similarly, Dhokra is an ancient metal casting process, which has found its relevance since 4000 long years. The earliest and most famous product of Dhokra art is the dancing girl of Mohenjodaro.
All Dokra metal crafts take anywhere between ten to thirty days to make it. In the beginning, however, most of dokra items were based on deities and animals. As time progressed, the artisans started imbibing their own creative identity through their work. Vases, containers, lamps, figurines, door handles, swords, etc., were all made using this method and the art thrived in the metal era.
The Dokra metal craft is famous throughout the world for its simplicity and enchanting, primeval folk sculptures. The art is made from two main methods – solid and hollow lost wax metal casting. The fascinating process uses only easily and natural available materials for making this amazing piece of art. In both the types of casting a mould is first prepared, with an equal composition of clay as well as dry sand. A coating is added upon the mould, for holding it together.
In solid metal casting, the molten metal is poured into the mound through sprue plugs and is cooled for some time. Once it is cooled, the mould is broken and the item is obtained. Few smoothening processes follow to make the product look good and polished. In hollow metal casting method, a solid core is used wherever the hole is required. Other processes are same as in solid metal casting.
Foreigners have been on a relentless pursuit in the past decade to purchase Dokra Handicrafts. Although a good work fetches a decent amount money, low government funding has reduced the number of makers of this art form. However, the technology centric era, with its emphasis on the online sale and purchase of goods has pulled the traditional and dying forms of art, back into the reckoning. Most sites also offer multiple payment options and the best part is that the products will be home delivered, within no time.
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