The Vishwakarmas in Kochi trace their root backs to various places in Tamil Nadu. 

Vishwakarma is a Hindu caste referring of craftsmen and artisans. They believed that they are the descendants of Lord Brahma who, according to the Hindu mythology is the creator of all worlds. 

The Vishwakarmas in Kochi trace their root backs to various places in Tamil Nadu. It was their skill of crafting gold ornaments that made the community integral part of the society which continues to have a craving for gold ornaments.

Majority of the community member plied their trade as goldsmith for a large part of history. But the younger generation has no liking for their traditional craft and has went into other professions. 

According to the official data there are approximately 600 -700 Tamil Vishwakarma families currently live in Kochi. The community members have been influential and some has even went on to become notable and widely recognized politicians. 

PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITION BY BIJU IBRAHIM: COMMUNITIES OF KOCHI

Places have souls and Mattancherry in the city of Kochi has a mystic one. Biju Ibrahim discovered this while documenting the lives of Kochi’s 38 communities through black and white pictures. Distinct in layers of identities – caste, faith, language, ethnicity and region – these communities have been welcomed over centuries and have, in turn, infused Mattancherry and Kochi with a rare and rich heritage. Historically, it has been home to Muslims, Christians, Jews and Hindus. The sea and port attracted sailors, traders from Arabia and Gujarat, preachers of Semitic faiths, colonisers such as the Dutch and Portuguese, political refugees and migrant labourers. A cross-section of India lives here in a radius of 5 kilometers. 

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AUTHOR & PHOTOGRAPHER

BIJU IBRAHIM

He captures the essence of rustic geographies, the people who are now becoming archive of the earth, the mythic & mystery of spaces & places, alleys of now filled with the density of then or before.

ART ORGANISATION

URU ART HARBOUR

URU art harbour is a cultural hub situated at Kochi. URU seeks to be a space for collaboration and a continual hub for artistic, cultural, and intellectual exploration. Founded by Riyas Komu and Zoya Riyas.

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