Mastering Art of Papier-Mache: Maqbool Jan's Passion for the Craft

Mastering Art of Papier-Mache: Maqbool Jan's Passion for the Craft
Image source: ANI

Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir: Maqbool Jan, an artist from Srinagar's Lal Bazar area, has dedicated his life to perfecting the art of papier-mache (Paper Machie).

Over the years, he has won several State, National, and International Awards, including the prestigious UNESCO Seal of Excellence for Handicrafts in 2007-2008.

Jan's passion for paper-mache started at a young age. He was forced to learn the craft after his father's untimely death, but it soon became a way of life for him and his family. "Our whole family is associated with this art, and we have been earning our livelihood very well," he said. "Besides that, I have taught dozens of people who too are taking art pieces to their own level."

Jan's innovative and creative skills have been widely recognized, and he has consistently received excellent responses for his craft. He believes that papier-mache is an integral part of Kashmir's culture and wants the new generation to see their culture through art.

"As music has been introduced as a subject in educational institutions, the government is yet to introduce papier-mache as a subject in educational institutions," Jan said. "We need a curriculum to promote this art form so that it gets more and more recognition at international stages."

Jan's passion for papier-mache has not gone unnoticed. He has trained dozens of students so far, who have also become masters of the craft. He believes that introducing papier-mache as a subject in educational institutions will help to preserve the art form for future generations.

"I want the papier-mache art to reach our future generations," he said.

"But given the paltry income, an artist is able to generate, it is difficult that youth will find interest in it. The government must take steps to help artists so that art can be taught to the next generation, which will help them earn a livelihood and boost the tourism sector as well," he added.

Maqbool Jan's dedication and passion for papier-mache are an inspiration to many. His desire to preserve this traditional craft for future generations is commendable, and his efforts to promote it should be recognized and supported.