Chunar cluster is able to form above 200 artisans and 20 self-help assemblies supporting the durable work force. The organization gains momentum day by day. A cluster is well defined as a geographic attentiveness (a city/town/few adjacent villages and their adjoining areas) of units producing near similar merchandises and facing common opportunities and threats. An artisan cluster is defined as geographically concentrated (mostly in villages/townships) household components producing handicraft/handloom merchandises. In a typical cluster, such manufacturers often belong to a traditional community, producing the long-established products for generations. Certainly, many artisan clusters are centuries old artisan.
Like all other handiworks and techniques, the tradition of pottery crafting in India is very old. The prehistoric pottery of a country speaks dimensions about its civilization. Pottery is one of those significant mediums through which men have expressed their sentiments. For thousands of years pottery art has been one of the most attractive forms of expression. A piece of pottery has a visual message in its shape and pigment.
Open firing techniques were used to manufacture the earliest pottery. Through this technique, temperatures could range from approximately 600 to about 800-900 degrees Celsius, which are comparatively low temperatures. Pottery is the most sensual of all arts. In India, we have had a great institution of pottery making. In fact, being an agricultural country, pots for storage of water and grains were in demand. The real commencement of Indian pottery began with the Indus Valley Civilization and the art of determining and baking clay articles as pottery, earthenware and porcelain has continued through the ages.
The craft was well sophisticated. Rectangular oven for firing the product were in use. Seals and grain and water containers were made that were put to use effectively. The potter dominates a unique position in the craft civilizations of India. The art of handling of clay is called Pottery and it is one of the earliest skills known to the Indians. The Indians are expert in molding clay with their hands to form various shapes.
The terracotta art with its long and uninterrupted history of the preceding centuries has imbibed such principles, which are based upon a thorough & explicit understanding of the human form. Mud craft is probably the earliest of man’s formations and marks his coming of age. It is as though as man faced environment he was stirred by its challenge. India is rich in its terracotta and pottery civilizations, many of which have their roots in early history. Pottery has a wide universality and its custom goes back to span of five millennium. Terracotta pottery has been called the lyric of handicrafts because of its irresistible appeal. A variety of earthen objects are created such as lamps, jugs, flower vases, containers, musical implements, candle stands etc. In Chunar, terracotta articles, including toys are produced as ritual items for beautification and for utility throughout the state. The other crafts made are incense flames, toys, dolls and figurines etc.
Women potters run-through a unique hand modeling method, probably dialing back to earlier than Neolithic times before the invention of the wheel. The products made are surface of plain pots, water filters, vases, incense burners, lamps and hukkas.
Pottery is our oldest handicraft. In prehistoric times, most likely water was carried in woven baskets lined with the river clay. After the water was poured out of the container the layer of clay dried. The loss of moisture caused the shape to shrink and separate from the sides of the basket. When the clay, now shaped like a pot, was removed, and dried in the sun on hot sand, it retained the basket pattern. Early men and women then discovered that they could harden the molded pottery in hot ashes and make sturdy containers to transport and store foodstuffs. From these would have been extended the pots formed by hand and decorated with crude tools.
In ancient times, mankind made kilns to place their clay pots in for firing. The Kiln was lined with a kind of insulation brick that was made from a mixture of straw and clay, which had been dried in the sun. Later they used finer clay with high quartz content for their delicate pottery. They rubbed the pieces with a smooth stone to give a dull sheen or coated them with a fine layer of another color of the clay.