The Artisans of Aarong
There are many talented people in Bangladesh. Most of them live in the rural areas and would not have had the opportunity to promote their artistic and creative capabilities if Aarong did not exist. Aarong was founded in the year 1978 and is an organization that is dedicated to changing the lives of the disadvantaged, promoting traditional products from Bangladesh and opening the doors so their products can be exported. Throughout Bangladesh and in international destinations, the name Aarong is synonymous with quality, originality and uniqueness.
The designers and the creators of the product range offered by Aarong, have not only established the organization as leaders in deshi handcraft, but have also reignited interest and popularity for styles and traditional crafts that are native to the country. It this gracious blend of contemporary and customary, that ensures that each product is original and saleable in a modern society. Aarong therefore has thousands of artisans producing pottery work, jewelry, woven baskets, silk, leather items, brass pieces and magnificent wood carvings.
By supporting the products and the artisans, Aarong is playing a vital part in protecting an ancient heritage and restoring the breathtaking and sometimes forgotten beauty of Jamdani patterns and Nakshikantha works of art. Carrying the old traditions forward into the present day communities and markets ensures that this important part of the history and culture of Bangladesh is not forgotten.
Many of the artisans, who are mostly made up of women from the rural areas, are dependent on Aarong, as their items which are sold by the organization are sometimes their only source of income and means to financially support a family that often only has one breadwinner. Availability of a workplace is also important, as the artisans cannot work from home. Aarong has therefore established nine productions centers and three hundred sub-centers throughout Bangladesh, making it more convenient for workers who live far from city centers. Some of the centers can be found in Kushtia, Pabna, Baniachong, Jessore, Jamalpur and Gorpara.
Aarong is an organization that gives the local and international public the opportunity of owning an item or product that was not only handcrafted in Bangladesh, but which has the culture and beauty of their traditions melted into the essence of every piece. And every piece sold ensures that the rural communities of Bangladesh have a sustainable future.