Serving/Dining Plate: Manipur Black Pottery
- North East Region has always been a very difficult region to access and the unique traditions of the region has not reached other parts of the country for a very long time.
- Due to the terrain and immense forest cover, the communities were extremely adaptable and use available material which has become an integral part of their traditions.
- The black pottery is a traditional cookware of the NE region and have been part of many traditional homes for generations.
- The technique of this art is said to be handed down from the Neolithic period. A unique feature of this craft is that it is crafted without a potter’s wheel.
- It is made out of crushed Serpentinite and Weathered rocks (from the Longpi region) which are powdered in a wooden and bamboo vessel & mixed with water to make clay.
- The clay is moulded to pots and pan shape and then put to the kiln at 900 degrees celsius.
- When the pots and pans are ready, they are rubbed with the Chirona/Machee leaf which renders the cookware black.
- The stone pottery of Manipur is not only aesthetically appealing but also boasts of several interesting benefits:
- Weathered rock contains naturally occurring Iron which in turn provides iron supplements to the food cooked/served in them.
- They can be used directly in microwave to reheat food.
- They are breakable products: Please handle with care!
- They are pre-treated and can be used directly on gas stove or microwave oven
- The pots without the canes can be used in oven. Do not use pots with canes in the oven.
- Wash them normally with regular dish washing liquid. Avoid steel scrubber.
- The black colour is derived from the treatment given to the baked cookware using Chirona/ Machee Leaves. The base stone colour is reddish black and with usage, spotting of red colour of base rock happens.
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