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More Punjabi Artisans (Lockwood Kipling)


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Gurfateh !

Here are some more Drawings of Punjabi Artisans and Craftsmen - this time they are Charcoal and Ink Drawings by J Lockwood Kipling ( Father of Rudyard Kipling) and Head of Lahore's Mayo School of Art.

It is interesting to compare the styles of Kapur and Keher Singh with that of Kipling.

In this picture - a folio from a Janamsakhi - painted in circa 1755 probably in West Bengal - we see the familiar 'flat' style of Indian Miniatures.The folio shows Guru Nanak and Bhai Mardana visiting the home of Bhai Lalo , the carpenter. Note how the painter has carefully shown all the tools of a carpenter


In the Keher Singh drawing of a carpenter - the style is very much influenced by western styles of drawing - however attention is paid to the tools, just like in the older painting - this is perhaps because painters usually were artisans themselves - Keher Singh and Kapur Singh were Ramgarhia Sikhs - skilled in drawing from an early age - and very much aware of a craftsman's relationship with his tools and perhaps it is their way of underlining the central tenet of Sikhi , that of 'Kirt Karni' - The dignity of honest Labour.


In contrast Kipling's Drawings focus on the individual Artisans - they were drawn in the late 19th Century but have a very 'contemporary' modern feel about them.

They come from the collection of The Victoria and Albert Museum London - with thanks to Amandeep Madra Bhai Sahib ( You're a star ! ).

J. Lockwood Kipling

Drawings in charcoal, ink and watercolour on paper Late 19th Century - Amritsar

A Cloth Finisher


A Comb Cutter


A comb finisher


Dyeing Wool


Belt Weaver


A Loom for Shawls


A weaving Loom



Marble Inlay


Shawl embroidery


Loom Shuttle Maker


Spinning Silk Thread


A silver worker


Spinning the wool for Shawls


Winding Silk Thread


Enjoy !

Ranjit Singh 'Freed'

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Gurfateh !

I'll have a look for older pictures of Saaj being crafted - I do have these modern photographs which show the fast disappearing instrument makers of Punjab.

The pictures may be modern but they are 'Timeless' - you can see the same tools, the same 'working posture' infact the only difference from the Keher Singh drawings is that the lathes and vices are made of cast metal rather than wood.

This is a picture of Pritam Singh of village Boparai Kalan (near Ludhiana) - he is the only Sarangi maker left in Punjab - and he only makes them in his spare time out of love for the Sarangi.


A Dhadh maker in Boparai Kalan


Narsingha makers in Amritsar


A street of instrument makers in Amritsar


Nagara maker in Amritsar


Piaru Lal an Algoza maker from Kartarpur (Jalandhar), a famous centre for wood craft


Gurdial Singh of Guru Nanak Music House, Jalandhar - a Tanti Saaj maker


* Pictures from 'Folk Music and Musical Instruments of Punjab' - Alka Pande - Mapin 1999

I'll look for some more - in the meantime enjoy these -- "shaheediyan" I'm loving the articles you're posting on SA - Keep them coming !


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Excellent pictures, thank you veer ji. I hope to one day visit you with a 10 tetrabyte hard drive and copy all your archive!

A now deceased relative of mine was also from Boparai Kalan, interestingly he was also highly talented, he was in charge of the Guru Amardaas Gurwara Sahib (Leicester) building seva from it's inception, his workshop in the Gurdwara contained many wonderful old tools like those shown in the pictures above.

The last picture is very interesting, Bauji is making a Taus (peackock shaped saaj, gift of Sahib-e-Kamaal), you can see the main body section (see ouline of wings) is seperate from the neck and head (see other saaj in picture).

I look forward to any old sketches/paintings you find of a similar nature...


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Have been looking for some older stuff - here are some prints that might interest you - I think they were copied from eBay ( not bought by me - out of my league!) I don't know their age - but they are interesting









Instrument collections




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Here's a quick definition fom Alka Pande's 'Folk Music and Musical Instuments of Punjab' (Mapin 1999) for you MahaKaal Singh!

Oh and before 'tSingh' Baba ji jumps in - yes that is a 'typo' it should read 'Udasi' not 'Usadi' :wink:


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