West Bengal Handicrafts Expo - Another Year Closer to 25th Anniversary: Photo-Feature

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

24th West Bengali Handicrafts Expo 2011

Calcutta, Nov 29, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio / Penning Creations) The West Bengal Handicrafts Expo, in its 24th year, will be on throughout the month till December 12 at the Milan Mela Prangon across the road from Kolkata’s Science City. Gates are open every day from 2 pm to 8:30 pm and are free-to-enter for all. Organized by the Directorate of Micro & Small Scale Enterprises, this is the largest handicrafts fair in Kolkata. Hundreds of small and large Handicrafts companies and artistes come to exhibit their work for sale at the fair, also called “Hasto Shilpo Mela”.

The exhibition helps the artistes and the companies get exposure to urban markets, along with a taste of urban preference and new designs. A veritable abode for art lovers and collectors, thousands of artisans participate in the event, which covers an area of nearly 120,000 square feet, consisting of 45 pavilions. Every district of West Bengal is allocated a separate pavilion to accommodate their artists’ work. Right from jute handicrafts, cane furniture, horn crafts and batik products to leather goods and terracotta, this expo has everything to steal the attention of art lovers and buyers. Another pavilion allows for practical demonstration by reputed artists which is a great crowd-pulling feature of this event.

The recent increase in demand for handicrafts products is considered to be a direct result of increasing urbanization, and with it, the need for people to attune their lifestyle accordingly. A growing interest in home décor is essentially a sign of this trend. As the result, the sales trend at the Handicrafts Expo, this year has revealed a steady rise in demand for products like decorative pieces made of terracotta and other products like clay, horn crafts, artistic leather goods, etc.

The State Government is said to be thinking of identifying such handicraft activities as areas of intensive development to create more employment in the state. The progress of Bengal Handicrafts was furthered by the recent call from British deputy high commissioner, Sanjay Wadvani, to display West Bengal handicrafts at the International Trade Fair in England. These surely are good signs for resurrecting this industry that was in its waning phase.

With award winning displays from artists across the rural parts of India, this event has its heart in the right place. Offering profitable deals to the rural and handicrafts sectors, this event serves as a platform to elevate the standards of the economically backward sections. Exquisitely crafted leather jootis, jewelleries, hand printed textiles, bangles, and many more are heavily available throughout the fair, catering to all kinds of tastes and expenses. And what’s interesting is that some of the products available here, may not even be found at up-scale designer shops.

The event was attended by nearly 70,000 people last year and the lack of entry fee this year expects that number to shoot up even more. As a medium to generate development and progress throughout the state, this is definitely an initiative worth kudos!


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