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Art and Craft

Indian Art and Craft – Tamilnadu-Wood Carving

Indian Art and Craft – Tamilnadu-Wood Carving

There are many craft forms which are specialties of Tamilnadu. These are developed from ancient times and many of them are still active in different parts of Tamilnadu. Let us see what are these craft forms and their origin.

Variuos Craft works practiced in Tamilnadu

  • Glass Painting: Tanjore/Thanjavur, Chennai
  • Kolu/Golu Dolls: Chennai
  • Wood Carving: Chennai, Kanchipuram, Kanyakumari, Madurai, Perambalur, Salem, Tanjore, Virudhanagar
  • Musical Instruments: Coimbatore, Tanjore
  • Dhurrie: Bhavani-Erode (Bhavani Jamakkalam – Flat hand-woven rugs or Carpets), Salem
  • Panchaloha Statues and Accessories (Metalware): Erode
  • Hand Loom (Pattu Saree): Kanchipuram
  • Metalware: Kanchipuram, Kanyakumari, Madurai, Tanjore (Temple items)
  • Sea Shell Craft: Kanchipuram, Kanyakumari
  • Stone Carving: Kanchipuram, Kanyakumari, Madurai, Namakkal, Thiruvannamalai, Villupuram
  • Grass Mats (Korai Pai): Kanyakumari, Thirunelveli
  • Palmyra Leaf Products: Kanyakumari, Ramanathapuram, Tuticorin
  • Stucco (weather resistant wall covering): Kanyakumari
  • Textiles: Kanyakumari (Crochet work), Madurai (Applique – ornamental needlework), Thiruchirappalli/Trichy
  • Sungudi Theatre Craft: Madurai
  • Toda Embroidery: Nilgiris
  • Terracota and Pottery: Pudukkottai, Villupuram
  • Jewelry: Salem
  • Cut Glass work: Tanjore
  • Kalamkari Painting: Tanjore
  • Tanjore Paintings: Tanjore – Tanjore Paintings – Palagai Padam: Painting (Picture) on Wooden Planks (Palagai) and Glass Paintings
  • Thombai (Decorated Cotton Pillars): Thiruvannamalai
  • Crochet and Bead Work: Villupuram
  • Handmade Paper: Villupuram
  • Leather Work: Villupuram

Wood Carving

We can observe that the Wood Carving, Stone Carving, Metalware etc. are mostly active in different parts of Tamilnadu. Different types of Textile and related products are also produced in Tamilnadu.

Madurai is famous for Wood Carving especially the Rosewood Carvings. Bold forms make its style. You can see thorough and minute details in these carvings. Temple Wood Carvings and Idols of various deities like Ganesha, Saraswathi, Mahalakshmi etc. are prominent.

Wood Carving is done on both Soft and Hard Wood. Softwood like Cottonwood, Butternut, Basswood, Sycamore Maple, Plum are used. Hardwood include Mahogany, American Walnut, Rosewood, Teak and Pine. The rain forests in this region has enough supply of wood that can be used for carving.

Picture used for illustration – Courtesy: Poompuhar

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Born and brought up in Kerala, I did my schooling in Kerala and graduated (B.Sc Physics) from the Calicut University. I have worked with a Swedish Company from 1994 to 2015, as a Senior Project Manager in their Group IT Division in Dubai. This blog is the result of my strong desire to communicate with others, sharing what I know and what I could gather from various sources.


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