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October 28, 2018

Mask Festival in Kushmandi draws tourists

Mask Festival in Kushmandi draws tourists

Today is the last day of mask festival called Mukha Mela at Kushmandi in Dakshin Dinajpur district. Kushmandi is the centre of the famous wooden mask makers associated with the traditional Gomira dance. It is one of the Rural Craft Hubs developed as a joint venture between the State Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises and Textiles (MSME&T) Department and UNESCO.

About 186 wooden mask artisans, 171 pottery artisans, 63 cane and bamboo artisans and khon mukha artisans from Uttar and Dakshin Dinajpur took part in the festival. Hundreds of people from all over the State as well as foreign countries attended the festival.

Folk artistes performed at the festival. These performances were organised by the Mahishbathan Gramin Hasta Shilpa Samabay Samity with support from West Bengal Khadi and Village Industries Board (WBKVIB).

It may be mentioned that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s special emphasis on the revival of the traditional art forms has revived the mask-making industry. Kushmandi is home to about 250 artisans carrying forward the tradition of wooden mask-making of the Rajbongshi community.

The masks, which started their journey from village dance performances, are gradually finding a place of pride in urban drawing rooms as delectable pieces of art.

Source: Millennium Post (Image Source)