A three-day dance festival was embarked in Chhattisgarh’s Raipur on Tuesday with the aim of promoting tribal culture and reviving the endangered craft of Matparai. Asserting that the culture of crafting Matparai was “almost extinct”, Abhishek Sapan is trying to revive it by participating in the festival.
“Matparai is a handcraft made from soil and paper. Since this craft has almost extinct, I am trying to revive it through this festival,” Durg-based engineer-cum-craftsman Abhishek Sapan told ANI. Sapan is the only artist making Matparai craft for the last 11 years. Earlier his mother and grandmother used to make it, he said.
He further said that the festival has a good marketing approach and the craftsperson can get a good response from other states and abroad as well. “This festival has good marketing and we get good responses from other states and abroad. This is the first time that we have participated as it is a good opportunity to revive our handmade craft and culture,” he added.
He is the only Matparai artist hopeful that their earnings can be increased through this festival. Mat means soil, and Parai meaning paper and both are mixed like “Papier-mache” art.
Raipur is hosting a three-day national Tribal dance festival where artists from 28 states and seven union territories of the country participate. Besides, the festival is also attended by ten other countries– Mozambique, Togo, Egypt, Mongolia, Indonesia, Russia, New Zealand, Serbia, Rwanda and Maldives– who perform tribal dance here.
This year, around 1500 domestic and foreign artists are participating in this event. Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel has said that the festival is aimed to protect the age-old traditions and rights of the tribal people. It will also promote their culture across the world, CM Baghel said.
On the occasion of the National Tribal Dance Festival and Rajyotsava, CM Baghel also inaugurated the Chhattisgarh Shilpgram and Departmental Exhibition in Science College, Raipur.