Meet the Maker: Amarnath Shetkar – Bidriwala
Meet Amarnath Shetkar, founder of Bidriwala, a concerted, concerned, and passionate endeavor towards sustainable development of the ancient, eye-catching, and very fine art and craft of Bidriware.
“If I wasn’t doing this, I’d be in any creative field that gives me an opportunity to bring about some positive change,” He said. How gratifying we said to ourselves. We must get to know this story better. And so should you.
So, who is this? What is this? This is Bidriwala, a committed, concerted, concerned, and passionate endeavor towards sustainable development of the ancient, eye-catching, and very fine art and craft of Bidriware.
We spoke to the founder of Bidriwala, Amarnath Shetkar, about his dreams and plans for Bidriwala. You are cordially invited for more.
Founder, Amarnath Shetkar flanked by his artisans
Where are you located?
We are located in BIDAR, the place where Bidriware originated. Bidar is a small town in Northern Karnataka, on the border of Maharashtra and Telangana.
How many (if more than one) members make up your team?
Founder: Amarnath Shetkar
Creative help: Amanath’s wife, Chennaveeramma Shetkar
Helper: The tireless Nagshetty
I also work with many artisans. I am naming a few of them here. They are Rauf, Habib,Raj, Javed and Mohsin.
What were you doing before you started doing this?
I have done my engineering. I worked for few years and then did an MBA. I worked for some more years. Then I started Bidriwala in November 2014.
Why did you choose to do what you do?
Bidar is my hometown. I was born and brought up here. I am passionate about Bidriware. I know a lot about it. I got to know it even more and up close during my final year project of MBA, which revolved around giving market access to Bidriware.
During and Post my MBA, I worked for few Social Organisations. Social entrepreneurship fascinates me. I find the idea and act of bringing about economic and social change motivating. Bidriwala allows me to do this.
We are fascinated by names. What’s the story behind your brand name?
My Company is named Curio 38. The brand name is Bidriwala.
Curio (noun) means a rare, unusual, or intriguing object. 38 is the Bidar District Road Transport Office number (KA38). Thus the company name.
Bidriware is about artisans. Without artisans, there would be no Bidriware. So the brand name, Bidriwala, showcases the artisan.
Which are your best selling products?
Elephants and Bidri Jewellery are our most popular items.
What kind of people do you create your products for?
We are for tasteful people interested in the story behind the craft as well as the product.
What are the challenges you face in connection with achieving your goals?
Adapting the age old craft, technique, design, and aesthetic to latest trends is challenging in the need to maintain the fine balance of Tradition and Modernity.
Where do you see your brand three years from now?
I will be happy if leading designers of India start developing products in Bidriware and help it reach a wider market. I also hope to see some significant improvement in the lives of the Bidriware Artisans through Bidriwala.
What would you be doing if you weren’t doing this?
I’d be in any creative field that gives me an opportunity to bring about some positive change.
Visit the Bidriwala Shop on Engrave.