Whenever someone speaks about "Heritage", I instantly remember vividly about Raghurajpur: the heritage crafts village of Odisha. It is not just any ordinary village, it is the heart and soul of creativity.
Located around 12 kms away from Puri, Raghurajpur is the home of around 500 Chitrakars(artists who are expert in Pattachitra painting). Each household has at least one Chitrakar who is highly skilled and immensely creative. Raghurajpur is famous for Pattachitra: paintings on a piece of cloth. There are many types of Pattachitra like Tassar cloth Pattachitra, Palm leaf Pattachitra etc. With evolution and innovation, now the Chitrakars have started painting exquisite Pattachitras on coconuts, betel nuts, clay pots & bottles.
What makes this place stand out from others? The cheerful smile on the face of the artisans. They will welcome you to their home. They will show you their art, crafts & paintings patiently. They will tell you about their tales of struggle. They will explain the process of their trade. But, they will never force you to purchase anything from them. Even if you don't purchase anything, they will bid adieu with a smile.
There is so much of talent in this village! One trip to this place and you will definitely feel amazed. So much to learn from everyone, so little time! It is a known fact that the artisans of Raghurajpur are struggling. If you visit Raghurajpur, then please purchase something to support the highly skilled Chitrakars & save their craft from becoming extinct!
By Biswa Prakash
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