Meet Sajan Kunchhe Prajapati, a young stoneware artisan from Thimi, Bhaktapur who is currently studying BFA, with a specialisation in pottery. As he continues the family legacy, he wishes to promote the pottery culture and handover the tradition to the coming generation. He makes ceramic pieces such as plates, cups, bowls, vases, etc.
Read the full interview to know more about Sajan.
What’s your name?
My name is Sajan Kunchhe Prajapati.
What is your age?
I am 23 years old.
Where are you from (city/town/community)?
I am from Madhyapur, Thimi of Bhaktapur district, 44811, Nepal.
Which products do you make?
I make ceramic pieces such as plates, cups, bowls, vases, etc.
In frame: Artist from Sajan's team
How and when did you learn your craft?
I have been learning this craft since childhood as pottery is my family business. I was always interested in making pottery crafts and have valued its cultural significances. After the completion of my high school, I decided to contribute something in this field so, I joined Banaras Hindu University. Currently, I am studying BFA 3rd year in the ceramics department and my specialization is pottery .
What space do you work from? (House, workshop, yard etc.)
We have a workshop near our residence so I work from there with 22 other potters.
Where do you get your materials to create your craft? (Ex. Brass)
I get the raw materials from our locality in Bhaktapur and sometimes source it from India as well.
What’s your favorite thing about creating your pieces?
Promoting our traditional crafts and handing it over from one generation to another has always been my passion so, every time I create the pieces I feel I am promoting the cultural significance and tradition.
What is your least favorite part?
Pottery needs a lot of care and attention so, sometimes when we are unable to give attention there are chances of breakage and also the products won’t be ready as per the design. So, this is my least favorite part about my work.
What inspires you to create?
Every time I am creating pieces, I feel like promoting our tradition which inspires me to create even more and better.
Do you work alone or with others?
I work with 22 other potters in our workspace in Bhaktapur.
How long does it take you to create one piece (on average)?
From preparing the raw materials to getting the pieces ready the time period may range from 2-3 weeks.
Who do you think will wear/use your creation? Do you have a message for them?
As I have a deep interest in art and this is what I used to make my crafts, I think the people who value art buy my products. Also, whoever wants to use the Nepalese handicrafts they will buy the pieces. My message for my consumers is that ceramic pieces are far better than plastic pieces as they are environmentally friendly. So, use ceramic pieces rather than plastics.
What is your biggest dream?
My biggest dream is to promote our pottery culture and handover the tradition to the coming generation.
Story about Tanaa Vase, handcrafted by Sajan
One of my teachers in Banaras suggested that we create the designs of free lines and then create the product of those designs in one of the classes. As I have always been inspired by my culture, my imagination drives me towards the stripes of the “Madaal”, one of the most popular folk instruments of Nepal. I tried to create lines as the “Tanaa”, the wooden stripes in madaal and then used the design in the vase so that it can provide something meaningful and decorative vibes in the people.
We are proud to have a young and talented artist like Mr. Sajan Prajapati as one of our artisans. We wish him the best in all his endeavors and also wish his dream to promote the pottery culture and hand over the tradition to the coming generation becomes a reality.
If you enjoyed reading the story of the artisan, help us spread the word in your social media to support the local economy and encourage the talented artisans like Sajan Prajapati.