Bamboo Mastercrafts : An Ode to Traditional Craftsmanship: Naga Cane and Bamboo Weaving
The making of baskets is an age-old craft of leisure which was practised by the elderly males of the family in the traditional rural economy of Nagaland.It was never a profession in the old context, which has led to the dwindling of this skill in present times.
Bamboo and cane basketry is not art in tribal economies like Nagaland, but an intrinsic part of daily life and activity that produces essential household items like baskets to carry firewood, bamboo tubes for water, food and grain storage, vessels, plates, furniture, containers, spoons, and fishing and hunting traps. The craft also extends to personal accessories of adornment and headgear. The two materials can be found everywhere in traditional homes.
The woven craft further penetrates into the realm of architecture and public engineering — in bridges and fencing, bamboo and cane are major ingredients used along with timber. It was actually the weaving of bamboo splits or flattened bamboo culms that found application in various ways, causing this unique extension of the craft form. Fine detailing and varied intricate weaves are the hallmarks of the traditional bamboo and the cane basketry of this region.
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