Last year my husband and I went to see the Taj Mahal. I wasn’t too excited about the trip, after all, how different could it be from all the photos and videos. I was dead wrong. It was spectacular, majestic, and truly one of a kind.
Our tour guide mentioned that today we wouldn’t be able to re-create the Taj. Not because Shah Jahan chopped off the hands of all the workers so that no one could replicate the architecture, but because the artisans who painstakingly carved each and every piece of the marble (with perfectly identical and symmetrical motifs) were dying off.
This very specialized art form is facing extinction because the artisans are reluctant to pass the trade to the next generation. Instead, they are encouraging their kids to pursue more fruitful and mainstream opportunities. This is a growing trend across many cultures and countries.
Mainstream cost-effective replicas are destroying centuries-old art forms. Lack of monetary prospects combined with limited exposure to the global market is contributing to the extinction of ancient designs, artisanal techniques, and artisan groups.
WE CAN’T LET THIS HAPPEN!
Soothi is my attempt to preserve the artistic culture by combining modern elements with century-old designs. And I am asking you to help me do this by sharing this story, our brand, and starting a conversation.