I had heard of the Pottery Town, through the creative communities of Bangalore on Facebook, like the Craft-lovers and the Photo walk groups. The photo walks would be held usually before the annual Ganesha Festival, when the artisans are busy moulding up the Ganesha idols in bulk. Though I had missed them these year, due to personal commitments, I do wanted to visit once, so as to give them more exposure, rather than taking random pictures and creating a portfolio for my own purpose. Using the medium of photography to convey their story of misery and their age-old artistry.
I reached the Pottery Town streets on August 19th, World Photography Day, along with two of my photographer friends, and as expected there were two more groups of photographers, scouting for pictures, in the small area of two lanes which constituted the whole of potters in Bangalore.
One of the potter families, who was working at the potter wheel, refused to be photographed. Obviously, they had seen larger share of photographers than the actual working idols they accumulate in an year. This reminds me of the Pushkar mela in Rajasthan, thronged by photographers in November for capturing the camel traders and their famous portraits. Food for thought, a matter of debate, open for discussion, on how photographers are more visible these days and obstructing the livelihood of traders and artisans rather than being invisible and merging with the environment.
There were variety of Ganesha idols lined up on the streets…
and there was also a modern form of mini elephant God on a tractor!
Along the main business of festivals, there were small pots and tumblers too kept for drying under sun.
We were also able to see the spray painting of Ganesha idols on the main road.
The only petpeeve after seeing all the enthusiasm going on, is the ever-troubling disposal of these idols, after their immersion in the Bangalore lakes. That story, though has been reported, shows up on the newspapers on the next day after the festival, only to vanish and reappear in the same way next year.
As much as His eyes give out the blessings to millions of worshippers, lets hope He closes the same eyes for the subsequent mistakes made by them.