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Arts & Crafts of Arunachal Pradesh

Arunachal Pradesh is a land of beautiful handicrafts comprising a wide variety. Artistic craftsmanship has been passed on from one generation to the other. A wide variety of crafts such as weaving, painting, pottery, smithy work, basketry and wood carving flourish.

From the viewpoint of the art and culture the state may be very conveniently divided into three zones. The first of these zones includes the Buddhist tribes; the second occupies the central part (from east Kameng in the west to Lohit in the east); and the third zone is the south eastern part of the territory.

Handloom forms an integral part of the culture and tradition, which is reflected in the State’s apparels. Some of these are unique Handloom products in artists weaving and design. Most of the Women folk of the state have been engaged in Handloom sector treated as primary occupation.

A wide variety of crafts such as weaving painting, pottery, smithy work, basketry, woodcarving etc. are found among the people of Arunachal Pradesh.


Weaving is the occupation of the womenfolk throughout, the territory. They are very particular about colors and have a beautiful sense of colour combination. The favourite colours are black, yellow dark blue, green, scarlet and maddr. Originally they used natural dye but now-a-days they switch over to synthetic dyes available in the market. The designs are basically geometrical type varying from a formal arrangement of lines and bands to elaborate patterns of diamonds and lozenges.These designs are sometimes enhanced by internal repetition and other decorations.

Cane & Bamboo Work

The cane and bamboo industry of the state has made a name for itself. As a matter of fact most of the domestic requirements are made of these materials. Hats, baskets, cane vessels, cane belts - woven and plain, bamboo mugs with carvings, a wide variety of ornaments and jewellery items are all Grafted by workmen.

Carpet Making

The choice of colour and the colour combination is unique. Though originally they weave carpet for domestic use, it has now become an item of trade and a major occupation for some ladies. Alongwith increase in demand, production has also been made in large scale.


Arunachal Pradesh can be called store House of Handloom designs as its 20 major tribes and more then 100 sub-tribes has got unique and appealing Handloom designs. The products are , Skirt (Gale), Shirt (Galuk) , cotton shawl, side bag, curtain cloth etc, in different pricing pattern according to the quality, traditional value, motive and design.

Wood Carving

Wood carving is a tradition with some of the tribes of Arunachal Pradesh. The Monpas, Khamtis, and Wanchos occupy significant place in this art. The Monpa wood carver make beautiful cups, dishes, fruit bowls and carve magnificent masks for ceremonial dances and pantomimes.

Other Crafts

Paper making, smithy work, carpentry, pottery and ivory work are the other crafts practiced by the Arunachalis. The Monpas make paper locally, from pulp of trees called Sukso or the paper trees. This hand made paper is used for writing religious prayers on them. Hunting, fishing also form the subsidiary occupations.

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