Tussar silk cocoon woven into brilliant art work in Orissa

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By Sharda Lahangir

Bhubaneshwar, Mar 3 : A tussar silk weaver in Orissa has displayed fabulous artistry in depicting deities of the Hindu pantheon through splendid cocoon artwork.

Karna Meher, a weaver in Barpali village of Orissa makes exquisite art pieces from cocoons and people throng to see the marvelous decorative items.

Among his art works, the mythological 'Darubrahma Tree' on which the images of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra are woven and covered in glass are a major attraction.

"This is purely a figment of my imagination. This tree is a mythological tree and I imagined that it would contain the three images of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra. This is a new work for me unlike weaving," said Meher.

The 'DaruBrahma' or neem tree portrayed by the artist bears the images of three deities that have prominence in the temples of Orissa.

The traditional deities of the Hindu pantheon are carved on the neem tree and placed in the Jagannath Temple.

According to Meher, first he had to boil the cocoon and then spins the thread on the art piece made from cocoon balls. It took him ten months to complete the splendid work of art. He is making several decorative items with cocoon and tussar silk thread.

Initially, his family members were opposed to his endeavour as tussar silk is expensive.

Jasbanti Meher, Meher's wife, is now happy that his artwork has captivated people from far and wide.

"I was very impressed with my husband's work and glad to see people visiting our house to see the excellent work done by my husband," said Jasibanti.

Karne says his craftwork is expensive and expects the government to support him in his endeavor.

Cocoons are used to make tussar silk fabrics, but after taking a look at Meher's creative work, it can be said that cocoon has several uses.

Meher wants to set up an exhibition where he can showcase his magnificent artwork.

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