India and Art are quite synonymous. The world knows India for its rich diversified art forms. From state to state and region to region, India has its variety of different performing and creative art forms. One of these ancient forms is Kathputli (Puppets). To make it simple for you to understand, Kathputli is a combination of Kath means wood and Putli means doll. Hence a doll made from wood.
Rajasthan Kathputli Puppet
The Kathputli shows have its roots from the Indian state Rajasthan. Where artisans make dolls and sell for their livelihood. The major contribution of the art of making kathputli is from cities of Jaipur. There are mainly people from agricultural field practice this tradition. In local language they are called to be Bhats belong to Nagaur area in Marwar region.
Delhi Kathputli Puppet
The next hot spot in India where Kathputlis are made and sold in large numbers is in the Shadipur Depot area in Delhi. The place is famously known for its reputation for the largest amount of descendants in the area who earn their living from the art of making Kathputlis. You know they say the ambience of the place speaks about the people living there! Once you visit the Shadipur Depot area, you will feel the sweat and toil of these hard-working people in the air of the place.
Kathputli Puppet dance Show
During ancient times, Kathputli puppet shows used to happen in the form of story-telling to entertain people. You may found these tradition not only in Rajasthan and Delhi but also in state of Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. Kathputli Puppet Show basically showcase various tales from Hindu religious epic books likes Ramayana and Mahabharata with an objective to spread social messages on various burning issues of the arena.
But with the advent of technology, in the times of social media and theatres, the art is drastically fading. With the coming of new-age technology, artisans are unable to get invitees to perform their puppetry shows. Hence the fading income rate of the families!
If you are a movie lover, you must not miss few Indian Bollywood produced movies which may take you to the journey of Indian old tradition of Kathputli and its importance in social life.
First movie is Kathputli (1957) directed by Amiya Chakrabarty and Nitin Bose where films revolves around the lead cast puppeteer Shivraj and a young singer & dance Pushpa. Pushpa belongs from a very poor family and she decides to help Shivraj in puppet show.
Accidently one day Shivraj met with an accident which eads Pushpa to ask help for work from Loknath who wanted her to work on dance stage. She is shown struggling with decision making whether she should simple life or glamorous path.
Second movie on Kathputli was released in 1971 directed by Brij. This was a romance film having melodies songs sung by acclaimed singer Kishor Kumar, Asha Bhosle and Mohammed Rafi and Lata Mangeskar.
The story moves around two cast Vishal and Nisha who are married but later got issues because Vishal’s mother tells something unheard about Nisha which made Vishal worried and takes toll on his married life. Here, Vishal is shown as a Puppet of his mother where he blindly believes his mother and act. There is nothing related to actual Kathputli show here infact it is family puppet drama which you may surely enjoy watching.
Every year a lot of directors and producers end up coming to these places for getting the essence of the original art forms. These are a few of the best location for filming in India.
So now you know where you can find the original art forms in India. Do get your bags pack and head-on to experience the rich tradition of the art of making Kathputli’s.
Buy Kathputli Online
If you are really wanted to support Puppeteer by purchasing their puppets, you may buy online from various legitimate websites. Or whenever you visit to these cities for your next trip, you may directly purchase from them. By buying from these artisans, one can really encourage these old arts forms.
A great shout-out to the amazing hard-working souls, keeping the art and tradition of India still intact! As a millennial let’s take the power of technology to save the fading tradition of Kathputli puppet making. Let’s get together to reach out to the people and make them aware of this age-old art form of Kathputli making. Let’s bring together a world who is more united, who believes in the power of technology but also never fails to recognize the talents of artisans who, till date make hand-made Kathputlis to not let the age-old beautiful tradition fade out.
Cheers to the Artisans and their will to still be relevant in the world of technology!
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