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Traditional Contemporary - bamboo products
Guided by Master Bamboo Craftsmen from Gujarat and Tripura, my team and I created products native to the regions.

This traditional fish catcher is used by communities in the Dang district of Gujarat. Our guide, Ambu bhai meticulously took us through the steps of making this product which introduced us to the tools, techniques and products, native to the community.
The Dang community lives in houses made entirely out of bamboo which can last up to 10 years. If by that time the bamboo has not been infested with insects, they reuse it to make products of daily use.
Intrigued by this, my team and I decided to make a miniature model of an element from their houses.

Since our last product had an organic shape, we decided to make the next one relatively geometric. Keen to learn how two pieces are joint together, making the door taught us the joineries they use. These systems are strong and don't require the use of an adhesive.
The next product introduced us to the application of heat to bend and mould bamboo to a desired shape. 

Dowels joining the parts of the frame together were the same as the ones used to make the miniature door. The weave covering the frame of the miniature swing is the same as the one used in the fish catcher.
After finishing the miniature swing guided by Ambu Bhai, Ranjit Debarma and Subrata Bhai, the craftsmen from Tripura explained the similarities in the swings they make to the one we created. To learn their methods and techniques we created another swing guided by Ranjit Bhai.

The frame of the base of this miniature swing was a semi-circle on which straight planks rested. To make this frame, we created a jig out of waste plywood and let it rest with the help of c-clamps over night. The top of this swing had a weave similar to the one in Miniature Swing 1. However the rest of the body was covered with a mat which was weaved before it was wound through the frame of the body, unlike the top where the weave was done onto the frame.
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After developing an understanding of the material, we created products by combining traditional methods and techniques with contemporary ones.

These master craftsmen had been working with bamboo for over 20 years developing the same set of products. Their method did not involve the use of any measuring equipment or writing tools. They worked with estimates and relied on their experience to deliver quality products.
We had just been introduced to the material and were still learning along the way. So, our designs had to be put on paper before they could be executed. Using the drawings as a guide and with Subrata Bhais experience, we created two coffee tables.
The most challenging part about the table with knotted legs was figuring out how to keep a buffer space in the centre while having the extreme ends attached. Our solution was to have large dowels in the centre which create the buffer space while adding to the aesthetic. The extreme ends were joined with adhesive to give a clean look.
Traditional Contemporary - bamboo products
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Ashima Tshering

Traditional Contemporary - bamboo products

Guided by Master Bamboo Craftsmen from Gujarat and Tripura, my team and I created products native to the regions. After learning the basics, we w Read More
8
328
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Published: