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Posted at: Jan 12, 2019, 7:37 AM; last updated: Jan 12, 2019, 7:37 AM (IST)

26-yr-old Valley engineer has designs for papier mache art

Mobile covers made by Bisma Parvez get huge response

Rifat Mohidin
Tribune News Service
Srinagar, January 11

In Kashmir, where the antique papier mache art is struggling to survive, Bisma Parvez Mir, a postgraduate in mechanical engineering, has taken it upon herself to introduce the craft in the day-to-day life in Kashmir.

A resident of Kara Nagar in Srinagar, Bisma, 26, pursued her MTech in mechanical engineering from the National Institute of Technology in Srinagar but somehow, she was more drawn towards the culture and heritage of Kashmir, especially the papier mache art.

“I always liked to draw things. I was attracted to the beautiful architecture of Kashmir. Papier mache is something that I always admired,” she says.

“I mostly do Kashmir-based art and have immense respect for artists, especially the elder ones, who did it with all their heart,” says Bisma.

Recently, Bisma introduced mobile covers in Kashmir which are made with papier mache art and to her surprise, there was an overwhelming response from people.

“I started using papier mache on mobile covers and the response was amazing. Many people want to have these mobile covers but I am unable to meet the demand,” she says.

Now, Bisma is planning to engage more girls so that she can teach her art to others and keep it alive.

However, she feels disappointed that in a society like Kashmir, people do not value the work of an artist.

“In Kashmir, people don’t realise the value of an artist and how productive his work can be. This has discouraged us,” says Bisma, who appeals to young people to pursue the art as a career.

She says she went to old artists and tried to learn the process which helped her give a shape to her passion.

Through her art, Bisma also comments on the two-decade turmoil in Kashmir. She says in any situation, an artist cannot remain quiet.

“I talk about the impact of the turmoil on the women in Kashmir,” she says.

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