CyberFair Project ID: 8621

Close this Window

NOTE: Due to URL changes, some links may no longer be valid.

International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: The Exquisite Crafts of Odisha
Category: 8. Local Music and Art Forms

School: Lakshmipat Singhania Public School
    Rayagada, Odisha, India

25 students, ages 13-18 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on February 20, 2022. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021

Classes and Teachers: Rasmita Dash, Nyayapati Padmanabha Swamy, Samarendra Swain, Ajayananda Beborta, Ruby Kundu

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

India, with its glorious history, diverse ethnicity, and dynamic culture has always drawn the eyes of travelers from around the globe. Each state of India uniquely contributes to its vast cultural heritage. Culture shapes its local and national identities. Odisha- a coastal state located in the southeastern part of India is a testament to this. It comprises many diverse groups with myriad spoken languages, traditions, and regional diversities. Often referred to as the soul of Incredible India, it is one of the most culturally rich states of India. Odisha’s rich cultural tradition is a harmonious blend of religion, art, and philosophy. Traditional arts, sculptures, music, dance, and festivals are beautifully interwoven into the fabric of Odisha’s way of life and thought. Odisha is home to a wide variety of beautiful handicrafts that depict its age-old history and traditions. The artistic beauty of this place is indeed an unexplored paradise. We hail from Jaykaypur, a small town in the tribal district of Rayagada located to the southwest of this state. Our local community is a perfect blend of tribal societies and sophisticated industries. Its food, festival, art, music, dance, and other elements are the signs that even in this era of modernization we have not forgotten our roots. We are proud to be a part of this wonderful community.

2. Summary of Our Project

Glorious archaeological monuments with their beautiful architecture and exquisite sculptures are the biggest example of the rich artistic culture of Odisha. The artistic creativity of the craftsmen is reflected in the paintings, textiles, metal images, jewellery, and other items of finery and aesthetic sensibilities. The handicrafts of Odisha are popularly known and admired worldwide for their quality, dexterity, precision, royalty in designing, and the unique creativity behind every art. These handicrafts primarily originated in the rural countryside areas of Odisha. There are almost more than one hundred crafts available in Odisha but only a dozen of them are of global importance. Some of them are KAPDA GANDA, IDTHAL, LAU TUMBA, SAND ART, PATTACHITRA, TALAPATRACHITRA, HORN WORK, IKAT WORK, CHANDUA [appliqué work], LACQUERED WORK, SANTHAL PAINTINGS, BRASS AND METAL WORK, DHOKRA CASTING, and SILVER FILIGREE. Along with these handicrafts, other items of coir, jute, grass, carpets, cane, and wooden furniture are also produced. This project briefly describes the importance, process of making, problems faced in recent times, and commercialization of the most prominent handicrafts of Odisha.

3. Our Computer and Internet Access

A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:more than 50%

B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:4-6

C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dedicated connection

D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:more than 6

E. Additional comments concerning your computer and/or Internet access (Optional):

“A good internet connection provided by the school helped us to collaborate with various community members while working on this project. With the help of a computer, we were able to collect various relevant information which helped us to accomplish our project on time.”

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

It was a challenging task for us to work on this topic as it demands in-depth knowledge of the subject matter, planning, and hard work. We had to put our complete dedication to presenting the overall beauty of the spectacular artworks. It was very tough for us to portray the creativity of artworks as the number of craftworks is large. The collection of such a vast amount of data and sources to intake relevant information was very time-consuming. We initially lacked proper communication with our teammates and teachers. The pandemic led to significant social disruption, adversely affecting the progress of our work. Restrictions were imposed in the cities and as a result, we were forced to work from our homes. We had to collaborate through online meetings. Moreover, it was challenging to remain inclined towards this project during our examinations. We tackled all these challenges with a sense of optimism which led to the success of our project. This would never have been possible without the guidance of our teachers.

5. Our Project Sound Bite

The quest for modernization has led to the erosion of our culture. Our main motive through the project is to make people aware of this alarming threat. Handicrafts are the identity of Odisha's culture. But eventually, they have lost their value and significance to some extent. It is high time that people understand how to preserve their culture as it reflects on their values. Though urbanization has its own merits, it is one of the main reasons why people forget their roots. Preserving and protecting the skills and knowledge of traditional crafts is becoming more challenging with time. Our aim is to revive the artistic heritage and spread awareness about them among the urban youth, initiating a step towards creating a world where traditional art forms are given due respect and the artisans get the recognition they deserve for their skills.

6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?

Art Education and heritage education are integral components of the Indian school curriculum. This has been emphasised repeatedly by various policy documents such as the National Curriculum Framework of 2005 and the new National Education Policy of 2019. Interdisciplinary art integrated projects focusing on various states of India are mandatory for students across all grades. The Central Board of Secondary Education conducts the Heritage India quiz to promote and spread awareness about the local heritage among students. Our project perfectly fits into these aspects of our curriculum. Many students are not interested in art and craft and believe that art integrated projects are unnecessary. However, education is not all about learning facts by rote. Education is supposed to be holistic- and art plays a crucial role in it. This project helped us know how fascinating the theme of art can be and how everyone can participate in art-related activities without directly creating art. Through this project, we realised the importance of teamwork and collaboration. We understood why these skills are essential in today's job market. Compilation of the data followed by extensive editing and review sharpened our language skills to a reasonable extent. Designing the website enhanced our knowledge of various software technologies. We also learnt that proper work distribution and prioritisation are the keys to any project's success.

Project Elements

1) What information tools & technologies did you used to complete your CyberFair project?

We have used 6 computers, 4 laptops, and smartphones for communicating, compiling, processing, and transferring required information for designing the website. The internet has extensively helped to come across vast resources from which we gathered relevant information for our concerned project. Digital video camera - Nikon D7500 was used to capture the visual data required for our project. Telephones and mobile phones were used to contact associates and gather information. Apps such as Adobe Photoshop was used to edit photos. Social media (especially Whatsapp) acted as a common point for our team members to communicate, share their ideas and work collaboratively from their own homes.

2) In what ways did you act as "ambassadors" and spokespersons for your CyberFair project both on-line and in person.

Our students acted as ambassadors and spokespersons to protect the identity of our traditional Handicrafts. We visited different local artisans to collect information for the project. We explained to them about the International Cyberfair Project. They were overwhelmed and praised us for our efforts. The popularity of some of our local handicrafts is declining. So, they were pleased that we are representing our local artforms on a global level. They appreciated Global School Net for providing a platform that represents local cultures on an international level to protect their identity and unite the global community for this purpose. They were amazed to know that a competition like Cyberfair exists. One of the artisans who works for a news agency promised us that he would draft an article about our project and the International Cyberfair Competition, encouraging more schools from our local community to participate. Our team members belong to various parts of the state. They contacted their relatives to gather more data. Many of them admired our project and gave their valuable feedback. Moreover, in our school, many students did not have any idea regarding our local art forms. They got to know many facts and were astonished. We conducted Essay Writing, Quiz and Painting Competitions based on our project topic. Our journey of being the ambassadors for this project in this international platform enriched us to propagate this passion and dedication for our rich culture throughout the times to come. We hope that this research will let the world know and recollect the importance of Local Culture and Art forms.

3) What has been the impact of your project on your community?

Odisha is home to a large number of handicrafts; however, many people in our community are unaware of them. Our project will play an essential role in promoting the artistic heritage before a larger audience by highlighting the significance of local art forms. In addition, several artisans in our locality who are not getting due recognition will be benefitted significantly from this project. Our website will be publicly hosted and will be an open platform for people from any corner of the world to cherish the legacy of the handicrafts of Odisha and unfurl their creative minds. We have interviewed many artisans for this project and received exemplary feedback about it. They were quite impressed by our efforts to protect the culture and shared our website within their community. They were happy that despite the growth of industries, some people from the young generation are still enthusiastic about their traditional handmade crafts. One of the artists even sought our help in designing their portfolio website. Our project is not just limited to the Cyberfair competition, but we have a much bigger goal of helping people understand that art and culture are integral parts of their own identity. We hope in the near future many people will join hands with us to help us accomplish our objectives.

4) How did your project involve other members of your community as helpers and volunteers?

The assistance provided by our experienced and committed teachers was invaluable in helping get everything done in a very timely manner. They guided the team at every step and encouraged each and every team member individually. We are grateful to our teacher Mr Ajayananda Beborta, who visited his native place to collect information for our project. We are highly indebted to Mr. Dwitichandra Sahu. He is a writer who writes about the rural aesthetics in his own words and provides them with a scripted beauty. We were quite inspired by his work and used many of his articles as a source of data for our website. We also interviewed him to get ideas and information for our project. We would like to thank Mr. Sahu for his humbleness, patience and cooperation. We contacted a number of artisans. They provided us valuable information for the project and helped us explore the topic in greater depths. We became more aware of the role played by art in shaping our cultural identity. The artisan Mr. Himanshu Shekhar Pandia served to be an abode of knowledge and information and guided us throughout this project. We are very grateful to all of them for their support to this project.

Our parents stood as the pillars of strength with us whenever we needed their help, opinions, and support. We are thankful to our relatives who patiently devoted their time and efforts to help us in collecting the data. We are grateful to our friends who motivated us throughout this enlightening journey, and provided help and feedback whenever necessary. We are thankful to each and every person who contributed to our project in some or the other way. Our team is obliged and would definitely look forward to such support and aid in the coming future.

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

An active exploration of any topic fills one with knowledge. In a world that seems too big to comprehend, this project has offered a remarkable opportunity to conduct research on the home ground about the exquisite crafts of Odisha. As a part of the learning experience, we came to discover so much about Handicrafts. Apart from all these, this project has provided a dynamic approach in acknowledging us with the immense power of collaborative work. We came to realize that “Unity is strength' where there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 8621)

Close this Window