Though Varanasi is mostly known for its holiness and spirituality, it is indeed known equally an art and craft hub for people interested in the same genre.
The handiworks produced are not only generations old but each product itself has quality, precision and culture made within.
Most notable works include Banarasi silk sarees which have a reputation worldwide for the material and master craftsmanship. Often embroidered with gold, silver zari borders or silk brocades for giving birth to elegance.
The main types of sarees include Jamdani, Vaskat, Tanchoi, Jangla and Butidaar.
Varanasi along with its neighboring areas produces carpets with design, quality and style that cannot be easily touched by others. The Bhadohi carpets are mainly exported to Europe as the unique weaving mastery and designs are highly appreciated.
Wood and lac turnery
Another master skill that has been developed, Turnery is the process of making objects in a lathe machine. Lac is a substance obtained from insects which is used in making many products like various wooden toys.
Apart from the weaving expertise, Banaras is also world-famous for various other handworks since ages.
A few of the exquisite craftsmanship include wood carving and wooden toy makers, gold and silver smiths, musical instrument makers, terracotta (made from baking clay-like earthenware), sculptures,
Repousse (Engraving metal sheets with decorative designs) which has several applications from toys to temples.
Though time has moved forward, Varanasi still follows traditions from the past and maintaining it strongly. One can still find old buildings and streets in some areas which are preserved like artefacts in a museum. The walls of buildings, Ghats and several other areas are painted with vibrant colors depicting the mythological characters. These were early painted on stone blocks and cave walls
Meenakari-the lost art??
One of the most beautiful art forms practiced hereditarily is Meenakari-the art of enameling metals. Metal surfaces are designed, painted and decorated and then directly kiln-fired.
Although very popular, this handmade art is on the verge of extinction due to the easily competitive machine works.