Bhaktapur’s potters adapt to survive, Monika Deupala
“It takes days to see a blob of clay transform itself into a perfectly blended crockery set. That is what is most satisfying, and it is also very soothing work and calms the mind,” adds Prajapati, whose daughter Alina is now managing the company.
Due to the pandemic, however, business is down. It was Alina’s idea to offer pottery lessons when the restrictions were lifted in July. The classes were held only on weekends, there was a limited number of apprentices and proper precautions were taken to space them out.
Alina Prajapati has been watching her father working on the potter’s wheel from a young age. Like her father, she tried other jobs, but has returned to the family’s pottery business with new ideas and innovation.
“I barely see people of my generation going back to their traditional family occupations, but after I saw the potential of cermaics I thought it was high time I helped my father with his business,” says 25-year-old Alina, who hopes that the classes will take off once the lockdown is lifted.