OUR BEST DESTINATIONS

JOURNEY TO THE VILLAGE OF NOMADIC CRAFTSMAN

DOKRA village of Bankura, BIKNA




It was a fine morning of October(17th-2013) and we (Arnab Sarkar and Soumyabrata Sen ) took an early morning train from Santragachi.
We were travelling to Bishnupur , with plans of exploring the Historic marvels of Bishnupur and Bankura. The train journey was remarkable and so was the first day of the tour. The Terracotta temples of Bishnupur kept us spellbound .But many more wonders were yet to come , and on the second day we witnessed the craftsmanship of the Dokra villegers of Bankura.
The early morning bus dropped us to Bankura bus stand and from there it was a 20 minutes journey to Bikna.

Bikna is one of the few villages of India where craftsman are practicing the age old tradition .

THE PROCESS
********************


The main technique is called lost wax casting and is divided in two broad groups.Solid casting and hollow casting. At Bikna the hollow casting method is followed.

Core-making:
*****************


A clay core is made, slightly smaller than the final intended size of the
artefact. The core may be hardened by firing or sun-drying;

DOKRA _CORE_MAKING
DOKRA _CORE_MAKING


Modelling:
*****************


A detailed wax model is built up around the core, to the thickness of
metal desired in the finished object;

DOKRA_MODELLING
DOKRA_MODELLING
DOKRA_MODELLING
DOKRA_MODELLING

Moulding:
**************


The wax model is coated with a thin layer of very fine clay, which will
form an impression of every detail of the model. When this layer is dry and hard,
further layers of clay are added to the mould. One or more pouring channels are
provided, through which molten metal can run to fill the mould;
DOKRA MOULDING
DOKRA MOULDING

De-waxing:
****************


The mould is pre-heated to melt the wax, and the molten wax is poured
out (it may be recovered for subsequent re-use). This leaves a cavity which has the
exact size, shape and surface contours of the intended artefact;
DOKRA KILNS
DOKRA KILNS

Casting:
***************


Molten metal is poured into the cavity and the mould left to cool;

Finishing:
****************


The artefact is broken out of the mould. Traces of baked clay are removed
and surface blemishes and defects repaired.

DOKRA FINISHING
DOKRA FINISHING
DOKRA FINISHING
DOKRA FINISHING
DOKRA
DOKRA

HOW TO REACH
**********************

Bikna is situated to the North of Bankura. It is a 20 minutes bus journey.
Bankura can be reached from kolkata via bus and train service.

WHERE TO STAY
***********************

There are few good hotels and homestays.
You can contact 9804285815/8100950366/8017616136
for any kind of assistance.
** Acknowledgement
The Dhokra Artisans of Bankura and Dariapur, West
Bengal: A Case Study and Knowledge Archive of
Technological Change in Progress
D Smith,
R Kochhar

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