The art of Bidri must live on...
Bidriware, an ancient craft that was once the most demanding craft, is in danger of being lost. Once, the beautifully done delicate inlay work of silver, and gold, on black alloyed metal leaves the bystanders hooked to its classic, shimmery beauty. This unique art is said to be introduced during 14th and 15th century when Bahmani sultans ruled the city of Bidar, Karnataka, India. The eye-catching style and techniques of this art are influenced by Persian art.
This form of art is created by a process of casting, polishing, engraving, inlaying and blackening the alloy. One of the unique features of this ancient art is the special soil which is found at Bidar fort. This soil contains ingredients that give a gleaming black color to Bidriware.
The artisans first taste the soil by their tongues and then decide whether to use it or not. This soil contains ingredients that give a gleaming black color to Bidriware. This technique comes from experience and is passed on to the next generation.
However, this ancient popular art is now at the peak of diminishing because of the economic and social conditions of the artisans.
Currently, the rising cost of silver and the non-availability of soil are some of the main reasons that concerns the workers as it is said there's been restrictions on purchase of Bidar Fort's soil.
Also, insufficient government aid, competition among artisans, are some of the challenges faced by the artists.
Moreover, the process of making the Bidriware starting from molding to oxidation is done by hand and therefore it is time-consuming and hence costly too. Due to not being fairly treated and recognized for the kind of effort that goes into making this craft is why the number of original craft pieces and true artists is on a major decline. As a result, craftsmen are refusing to pass on the technique to the next generation due to insufficient returns and income.
Here at CHYATEE we really want to honor the artisans and the arts and keep these traditions alive. In order to keep the tradition alive we have created unique bidri earrings. These earrings are handmade, and unique. We really need to exemplify the time that goes into making these earrings. We hope to keep more Bidri art in our collection in the future.