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Sawantwadi Lacquer Craft

Sawantwadi, a town located in Sindhudurg District of Maharashtra, is renowned for its lacquer craft. This craft is believed to have been introduced during the late 17th and early 18th century. During this period artists, called Chitrakars or Chitaris, were brought from Goa to spread this art. The products enhanced with this art include furniture and light fittings.

Sawantwadi Lacquer Craft involves three steps. Color lacquer is applied to the surface of the object to be decorated and the lacquered surface is polished using a Ďkewdaí leaf. Floral patterns are painted on the borders and surfaces. The final step involves painting mythological figures on the surfaces.

The mythological figures are painted with Chitrakatha, Temple or Ganjifa styles. Images belonging to the Chitrakatha style are of bold nature, with the figures depicting some action. Temple style usually portrays deities in a sitting position. Ganjifa is more stylish and depicts the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu. This style is especially seen in the famous Ganjifa cards made during the 18th and 19th centuries.

Updated on 7th June, 2005
Location: Sawantwadi    


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