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Digitalizing Cooperatives

Banaras Hand Block Print

India's culture and customs are deeply ingrained with the practice of hand block printing. The state of Uttar Pradesh is a thriving hub for hand block printing, and its repertoire of prints includes well-known traditional designs like paisley, butis, and the tree of life.

The artform

Wooden or occasionally metal blocks are used by artisans to outline the intended pattern. These blocks are soaked in salted water, scraped, and smoothed before being carved with a cutting machine and a paper stencil. After spreading the raw fabric out on a table, it is covered with a blanket or waterproof cloth that has been coated with starch paste. In order for the colours to be vivid and stand out from the cloth's colour when the designs are printed, the artists hand paint the colours onto the fabric using paintbrushes of various sizes.

GI tag

This vibrant craft was awarded the GI tag in 2021.

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