Rangrez Community

Rangrezs–The faces behind the traditional tie and dye art of Bandhej

Guided by the pull of human connection, the urge to understand the laborious processes behind the colors, and the stories of lives that have synchronized around the Bandhej craft, Shatika brings you the story of Rangrezs (meaning dyers in persian), the weaver community of Rajasthan who are the faces behind the traditional tie and dyeart of Bandhej.

In the countryside of Rajasthan, the Rangrez weaver community of Rajasthan still resides in small hamlets of round, mud-brick huts painted on the outside with colorful geometric designs and decorated with detailed mirror inlays. Inheriting the traditions of tie and dye as a primary livelihood, their families have nurtured expansion and innovation of this craft for generations.

Traditionally, craft production in Gujarat and Rajasthan was part of a socio-economic web that sustained inter dependent barter relationships among local families like aweaver family would trade hand-woven turbans and shawls to a farmer family in exchange for lentils and so on.High-skilled handwork had further value as artisans reserved their master pieces for dowry collections and labored over unique or namentation’s for that would be presented at wedding celebrations.

Done largely by the women who are the master artisans of the craft, tie and dye for this community is an authentic home based enterprise that employs several members of financially challenged families who work in a communal fashion to create beautiful textile art. Headed mainly by women of the family this enchanting art has not only made the women of Rangrez community financially independent but also given them a sense of self-worth and confidence.

As the craft of tie and dye is passed down through generations and young boys and girls learn the skill from the elders in the family, each family in Rangrez weaver community of Rajasthan boasts of its traditional profession as the families work in synchronicity to provide for one another’s needs and to create what is called the celebrated art of Rajasthan –Bandhej.

 

References: https://lbb.in/delhi/bandhej-rangrez-women-jodhpur-reinvention-historic-craft-makers/

http://matadornetwork.com/abroad/photo-essay-the-artisans-of-kutch-india/

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