Photo Gallery: The Handicrafts of Sindh, Pakistan

September 8, 2011


Sindh has many indigenous handicrafts that have, despite their beauty and heritage, been denied the limelight and exposure they deserve. In an effort to document these crafts, I embarked on a trip to interior Sindh in July 2010.

My trip to Haala and Bhit Shah included visits to the factories and artisans who, day in and day out, work to create these beautiful crafts for us. Ajrak, kaashi (pottery), soosi (textile), Sindhi topi (cap) and jhundi (furniture) are some of the amazing items produced by these brilliant artists. These artisans have invested lifetimes and generations of experience, only asking for the basics in return: food and shelter.

I met a man involved in dying ajrak. He was committed to his craft, but had one request: better infrastructure and support for the industry. His hands were dyed blue from the chemicals he is exposed to daily. Craftspeople like him are underpaid and overworked but remain sincere to their traditional art.

Elsewhere, a potter I met compared his situation to slavery. He said he was forced to work indefinitely to pay off his grandparents’ debt to the factory owners.

Below are photos from my travels within Sindh.