Artisan Sushanta Kumar Pal said pottery items have lost their appeal as people are showing more interest in plastic and metal made cheap utensils and decors.
The 60-year old Sushanta inherited the profession as a potter at a young age.
He makes toys, kitchenware and other daily necessary products with clay. But, struggles to make ends meet with the little income he earns selling pottery products.
Sushanta, who participated at National Craft Council’s month-long craft and folk art fair in Sonargaon, told New Age about his life struggle, how the once popular pottery is losing its appeal and more.
‘Pottery is our family profession and I grew up learning it. It takes one day to make a toy or a cooking pan with clay. The process involves soil preparation, creating the product and finally colouring it. But, the price range of the products varies from 10 taka to 600 taka,’ said Sushanta.
‘Once, people used clay products for cooking and other purposes but now they are choosing cheaper products made of plastic and metal, without realising the affect of using such harmful materials,’ Sushanta said.
He said that artisans like him are being forced to change profession as people are becoming less interested in buying clay pottery items.
‘A few decades ago there were hundreds of potter families in Rajshahi district but now-a-days only a handful of them are doing pottery and most of them gave up making pottery,’ Sushanta said.
He said his two sons might also give up the family tradition.
He thinks that government can do a lot to help artisans like him to continue the profession.
‘The government can introduce pottery as gift items or souvenirs to support the artisans. We simply want a livelihood that can provide a roof over our heads and three square meals a day,’ Sushanta said.
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