Vivid and ancient like the land, arts and crafts in Uttar Pradesh are timeless treasure. Discover the mysteries as you explore the legacy that state has produced. Dating back to the pre-historic era, the artistic creations are a part of the history, culture and tourist experiences. The plethora of art, crafts, carvings, sculptures, performances, traditions and many masterpieces handcrafted by the skilled artisans of the trade add to the fascinating range of arts and crafts.
Here are some of the important arts and crafts in Uttar Pradesh
When it comes to the marvelous arts and crafts, the Stone Craft of Uttar Pradesh deserves a mention. These skills date long back in the days of the yore, while it flourished abundantly especially under the rule of Mughals especially. The most magnificent example of craftsmanship in stone is the Taj Mahal. The white-marble mausoleum is breathtaking, one of the wonders of the world and A UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Elaborate carvings, sculptures, decorative times and various other tokens serve as the most popular creations. The must-visit places to marvel at the artistry include Agra, Varanasi and Fatehpur Sikri.
The finesse of pottery creations of Uttar Pradesh is a legend. The history of artistry dates almost 600 years back. In the state, Meerut, Khurja and Hapur are the places which have earned repute with their skills. Though handmade the pots come e embellished with beautiful floral designs and patterns in vibrant colors.
A unique creation of pottery is Surahi, a vessel with long neck. They are used in summers to keep the water cool while also looking great as a decoration. Clay and Terracotta Sculptures are also the hand-made masterworks that look attractive and are integrated into the very fabric of the culture of Uttar Pradesh.
Among the fascinating arts and crafts in Uttar Pradesh, the skillful embroidery of Chikankari is unamusable. Chikan work is one of the proud creations of the city Lucknow. The skilful embroidery of white thread on fabrics is beautiful beyond words.
History states that the Empress Nur Jahan, wife of Mughal Emperor Jahangir is the one who invented the intricate needle work. The dexterous masterpieces of fabric make for comfortable as well as regal-looking clothing.
The oldest city of Uttar Pradesh and as records state, as old as civilization, Varanasi is well-known for the artistry of zari work. Traditionally, real threads of gold and silver are molded to create beautiful designs and patterns on saris and other dress materials. The heavy worked upon fabric bear a royal look.
Banarasi sarees of erstwhile Benares are famous for their exquisite zari work. In fact, the traditional sarees are an indispensable part of Hindu marriages in North India. There are dedicated communities that create these artistic masterworks that have for generations crafted such wonders. Visit to the villages is absolutely amazing as one can glimpse into village life of Uttar Pradesh, watch creativity at work and take home some fond remembrances.
Molded glassware is one of the awe-inspiring arts and crafts in Uttar Pradesh. Colorful glass bangles, beautiful chandeliers, jewellery, decanters, cutlery sets, small trinkets and many fine glassware are hand-crafted in the state. In fact earning a reputation globally is ‘Firozabad’ also called as the ‘City of bangles’.
Adopting the skills of Persians, carpet weaving in Uttar Pradesh has very much become one of the wonderful arts and crafts of the state. The roots of the most popular handicraft date back to the days of Mughal rule. Till date, the tradition is kept alive and has not earned national and international repute, also called as ‘Carpet City’. Here you can check out the finest of silk carpets crafted with delicate Persian patterns and look stunning.
The oldest craft in the India as well as Uttar Pradesh is hand printing. The patterns and the skill has survived the modern times in fact has re-emerged as one of the commendable arts and crafts of the country. The traditional fabric patterns are butis (polka dots) and the ‘tree of life’, paisley, Persian pickles, etc. which are the most impressive creations.
The city of Farrukhabad is lauded for hand printing. Wooden blocks are also used in recent times, keeping the fascinating craft alive and evolving.
Owing to its long history, Uttar Pradesh is widely associated with the artistry of metal ware. Metals are molded into interesting designs that look attractive.
Artistic musical performances are also a part of the arts and crafts that have originated in Uttar Pradesh. The oldest city of the civilization, Varanasi is known for the ancient music traditions. The style of singing, the use of music instruments and the ragas and tales are unique. Interestingly, Varanasi is listed among the UNESCO "Cities of Music" under the Creative Cities Network. There are dedicated music festivals held along the banks of River Ganga that celebrate the ancient traditions.
Preforming arts are a part of Indian culture as it is in Uttar Pradesh. Nautanki, Khayal, Ramlila and Raslila are some popular names. Each with roots in ancient history have evolved over the centuries. While some narrate the tales of Indian mythology, some share roots with foreign traditions, especially Persia.
Arts and crafts of Uttar Pradesh show a glimpse of the rich culture of the state. On your holidays in Uttar Pradesh, take a look at the fascinating treasure.