Muhammad Maqbool Jan (Founder)
Muhammad Maqbool Jan was born on 17-02-1965 into a middle class Kashmiri family .The Jans lived in MohallaAlamgari Bazar in Srinagar Kashmir .His father was a master craftsman of Sonziart.Maqbool Jan was just two years old when he lost his father . After his father’s death his mother became the main breadwinner of the family. Due to financial pressure Maqbool Jan had to leave school and start work to support the family. He joined the local Karkhanas( the workplace of master craftsmen) . He worked in different Karkhanas for a number of years and mastered the art of papier-mâché.
His father , a Sonzi master craftsman had left him some antique master pieces . These inspired him to develop colour combinations and bring new innovations into his art.
His innovative and creative skills were rapidly recognised and he won many state awards. He was conferred the prestigious UNESCO Seal of Excellence for handicrafts in 2007-2008.
Maqbool has continued to innovate and has introduced the art of pottery machie( papier-mâché technique on pottery ). His designs and work in pottery machie have won two state awards.
He has continued to experiment and innovate, pioneering fabric designing papiermache art in the valley.
His passion for preserving this art form he has trained twenty youngsters in this craft enabling them to earn their livelihood. His aspirations are to see this art form develop and flourish and artisans working in this field establish recognition and respect in society.
Firdous Huassain Jan (Co- Founder)
Firdous Hussain Jan is the younger brother of Maqbool Jan. He is also one of the renowned Artisan of valley . He share same values and art as his elder brother .
AWARDS & RECOGNITION’S
Awards are :
- UNESCO award in art& crafts 2007.
- J&K state handicrafts award 2003, 2005, 2006 &2007
- State of Honors award.