Upcoming Shilpgram in Molela, Rajasthan: What Does It Mean?

Rajasthan's rich artistic heritage is set to take center stage as the state government unveils plans to establish 'Shilpgram' in Molela village, Rajsamand district. This dedicated complex will serve as a platform for local artisans to exhibit and sell their exceptional clay artefacts, which have garnered international acclaim over the years.  The proposed Shilpgram will encompass a range of facilities designed to enhance the visitor experience and facilitate the artisans' creative endeavours. These amenities include a seminar hall, exhibition hall, and cafeteria, among others. Such infrastructure will not only attract a wider audience but also provide a nurturing environment for artisans to interact and exchange ideas, fostering innovation and growth within the craft. Recognising the significance of preserving this traditional art form and ensuring its continuation, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has allocated a substantial sum of Rs 2.55 crore to establish the Shilpgram and support further development in the village. This investment not only aims to provide a platform for artisans to showcase their skills but also to encourage the passing down of these invaluable techniques to future generations. 


Ashok Gehlot photographed in 2023


Molela, nestled in the heart of Rajasthan, is renowned for its skilled artisans who have mastered the art of crafting clay idols of folk deities and intricately designed decorative items. This ancient craft has become synonymous with the village, attracting attention from art connoisseurs worldwide. This traditional art form involves the skilled manipulation of terracotta clay to create stunning sculptures, idols, and decorative pieces. With its roots deeply embedded in the region's heritage, Molela's terracotta art reflects the artistic prowess and craftsmanship of generations past. The terracotta artistry of Molela is not limited to the village alone; it has gained recognition and admiration far and wide. Even the train station in Molela proudly features these captivating terracotta creations, serving as a visual reminder of the art form's integral role in the local community. Each piece of Molela's terracotta art tells a story, preserving cultural traditions and paying homage to the rich history of Rajasthan. Its timeless beauty continues to captivate art enthusiasts and serves as a testament to the enduring legacy of this cherished craft.


The beautiful skies of Molele


Through the establishment of the Shilpram, the Rajasthan government seeks to promote this unique craft on a broader scale, attracting tourists, art enthusiasts, and collectors from around the globe. The initiative holds immense promise for the local economy as well. By bolstering tourism in the region, the Shilpram will generate new avenues of economic growth and prosperity for Molela and its residents. It will serve as a catalyst for job creation, ensuring the vitality of the artisan community and the sustainability of this cherished cultural tradition.


Snippet from MeMeraki's Molela Masterclass

Similar initiatives in other places have showcased remarkable success and made significant contributions to the promotion of traditional crafts. For instance, the Avadh Shilpgram in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, organized the Hunar Haat, an event that attracted over 29 lakh visitors. This extravaganza provided a vibrant platform for artisans from across India to display their exquisite craftsmanship, fostering cultural exchange and economic opportunities. The event not only showcased diverse traditional arts and crafts but also offered a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage of the country. Likewise, the Shilpgram in Sevagram has become a celebrated destination for promoting various traditional arts and crafts. With its sprawling exhibition spaces, the Sevagram Shilpgram has served as a hub for artists and artisans to display their creations, celebrate their artistic traditions, and share their expertise. These successful ventures have not only showcased the artistic heritage of their respective regions but have also contributed significantly to the socio-economic development of local communities. These inspiring examples from other Shilpgrams across the country demonstrate the immense potential and transformative impact that the upcoming Molela Shilpgram can have in preserving the terracotta art and empowering the artisans of Molela.


Performer from Shilpgram in Udaipur


The Rajasthan government's unwavering commitment to preserving and promoting traditional crafts underscores the intrinsic value of these art forms in shaping our cultural identity. Through initiatives like the Shilpgram, the state celebrates the profound connection between art, heritage, and economic development, ensuring that the legacy of Molela's clay artistry continues to shine brightly for generations to come.



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