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Thursday, January 22, 2015

Tholu Bommalata- hand painted leather puppets

Tholu Bommalata, (In Telugu,  Tholu -  leather, Bommalata – puppet dance), is the traditional craft of AndhraPrandesh, which was flourished under the patronage of Vijayanagar kingdom.  The bright color combination on the leather which is translucent makes it perfect for the puppet show. I never got an opportunity watch the puppet show :(
Recently in a craft fest I could capture some images of the leather puppets: Normally the puppet shows narrate the stories of Ramayana and and Mahabharata:
Every puppet show commence with  a prayer to  Lord Ganesha. This is the puppet of Ganesha, which appears on the stage during the prayer.
leather puppet
 Puppets of Rama and Laxmana
leather puppet
 The artist holding the Puppet of Sita.
leather puppet
These puppets are made of translucent  goat skin and painted with natural colors. Now with the decline of the puppet show, the artisans have diversified their art in making different kinds of decorative items, like lampshades, wall hangings, frames, partitions  etc.
Lampshades:
leather puppet

leather puppet
 Partition with Radha and Krishna pictures :
leather puppet
Wall hangings:
leather puppet

leather puppet

leather puppet
Now there are hardly any puppet show using these kinds of leather puppet. Thanks to the artists of Tholu Bommalata , who kept the art of making puppets alive by diversifying their art. Most of the traditional arts and crafts, if changed according to the present day needs, it will be kept alive for the coming generations.

Love , laugh and live the life to the fullest,
-Ranjana

12 comments:

  1. Bright,beautiful and colorful. What a splendid art to make a living. Thanks for sharing this Ranjana.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, the leather puppets are always colorful. Thank you.

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  2. Beautiful work.
    I have a lamp shade of this.

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    Replies
    1. Yes Indrani, they have diversified their art in making different decorative items.

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  3. Replies
    1. Thank you. Trying to share whatever I know about different kinds of arts and crafts.

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  4. Where can I buy one of those puppets? Beautifully written blog..

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  5. Maam, do you know where this is done?.. any contact number? I am a teacher and would like to take my kids to see this or have them come to our school show their art work and how its made etc.

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  6. Hey.. Your blog is great !.. Is there anyway to contact these people? I am a school teacher and would like to know if you have any number to talk to these people, I want to show my kids how this is made and maybe even see one of these puppet shows.
    Please do let us know.it would be of great use to me and the kids.
    Thank you
    Gayathri

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  7. Hi you have a great blog!..Very informative..I am a school teacher and want to take my kids on a field trip.Can you let me know the contact number of these people so i can show my kids the art work, how its made and maybe see a puppet show if possible.
    It would be of great help if you can do so thank you.

    Gayathri

    ReplyDelete

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