The historic town of Bidar is famous for more than its architecture. The ancient art of Bidri was born here, during the rule of the Bahmani sultans. It is said that Abdullah bin Kaiser, a craftsman who came from Iran on the Sultan’s invitation to decorate Bidar’s royal buildings, developed this art along with the local artisans. Bidriware is made with a blackened alloy of zinc, inlaid with thin wires of pure silver. First, a molten alloy of zinc and a little copper is poured into moulds, and hardened to various shapes.
The making of Bidriware
The shapes formed are smoothed and covered with a temporary black coating. Intricate motifs are engraved on it, and silver wires are hammered into them.
The making of Bidriware
The making of Bidriware
The surface is smoothed thoroughly and it turns silvery white all over, including the zinc areas.
The making of BidriwareThe surface is then heated, and saline mud from the dark regions of the Bidar fort that is unexposed to sunlight, is rubbed onto it. This to selectively darken the body, but not the silver inlay. The paste is washed away, some oil is rubbed on the surface, and tada!! Gleaming new bidriware is ready 🙂
The making of Bidriware
The making of Bidriware
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  • Reply dvj January 23, 2011 at 7:17 PM

    Very well captured images of the process!

  • Reply Madhu Gopalan December 9, 2010 at 2:17 PM

    Thank you Lakshmi!

    Jidhu Jose – I'm so sorry – I use my husband's Nikon D200 now…I upgraded to it from my D40 a few months ago…But I still say D40 by force of habit 🙂

  • Reply Lakshmi -Celebrations December 7, 2010 at 9:08 AM

    lovely post madhu

  • Reply Madhu Gopalan December 6, 2010 at 3:53 PM

    Thank you Nikheel! It really is an awesome craft 🙂

    Thank you Jidhu Jose – I use a Nikon D40.

    Thank you Vasudevan!

    lol Sharanya :)) Thanks 🙂

  • Reply Sharanya December 4, 2010 at 10:25 AM

    Those are the two cutest elephants ive ever seen. Lovely post

  • Reply vasudevan December 3, 2010 at 3:55 AM

    Very informative & nice pics

  • Reply Jidhu Jose December 2, 2010 at 1:57 PM

    Wow………superb photos.
    Which camera u using?

  • Reply nikheel December 2, 2010 at 12:27 PM

    Thanks for sharing. Its simply mind blowing. This is the only indian Black and white craft and still amazing 🙂

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