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Art Witnesses A Major Shift

There are many countries around the world that have seen a stupendous rise in scope for handmade goods. According to an article featured in Iran Daily, “Handicraft exports registered a 41% growth during March 21-Sept. 22, against the same period of last year, said a senior official of Iran’s Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization (ICHHTO). It should also be noted that the value of handicraft exports reached $112 million in the year ending March 2014. Given the significant growth of handicraft exports during March-September, the figure is expected to increase further by March 2015. Apparently Iraq, Afghanistan, Germany, Turkey, Georgia, Pakistan, Denmark, Turkmenistan, Romania, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands, Qatar, Ukraine, Russia, Italy, Japan, Tajikistan and Sweden are said to be top markets of Iranian handicrafts.

“Exported handicrafts include Qalamkari (hand-painted textiles), woodworks, potteries, ceramics, glassworks, copperware, precious and semi-precious gemstones, miniatures, kilims (flat tapestry carpet) and Zilou (pileless carpet),” said the official, Pouya Mahmoudian. According to her, handicrafts are divided in two groups, namely ordinary handicrafts and luxury handicrafts. Mahmoudian noted that the value of luxury handicrafts is very high in auctions and could earn huge forex revenues for the country. We intend to launch centers for selling luxury handicrafts across the country. We are also interested in launching luxury handicraft market overseas – Mahmoudian.


Not only this but an article in a leading Indian daily, the Economic Times tells us about the Handicraft sector which can potentially employ 1.3 crore people by the year 2016-17.  “The number of individuals to be employed with this sector by 2016-17 is estimated to be 12.29 million. The CAGR during the period 2012-13 till 2016-17 is assumed at the rate of 10 per cent,” Union Textiles Minister Santosh Gangwar said in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha.

The government has been implementing 7 generic schemes for the promotion and development of handicraft sector. The schemes include the Baba Saheb Ambedkar Hastshilp Vikas Yojana; Design & Technology Upgradation Scheme; Marketing Support & Services Scheme; Research & Development Scheme; Human Resource Development Scheme; Handicraft Artisans Comprehensive Welfare Scheme; Infrastructure and Technology Development Scheme.


Artisna has realized the emergence of handmade goods industry worldwide and understands that it can serve as a means to if not eradicate then mitigate poverty from the world. With a large number of people engaged in the trade and making a living out of it, there is much to be done and we aspire to do it with your help. Join hands to support artisans and creators from around the world in creating a beautiful life through creating beautiful objects.

Lily Evans


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