Welcome to the official website of usta art from bikaner. The term USTA is derived from Persian word 'USTAD' or master in a particular art or several arts. During the period of Mughal Emperor Akbar a group of Usta artists came to bikaner in the royal patronage of Maharaja Rai Singh to perform design work at the famous junagarh fort of bikaner. The craftsmanship and skill of those artists can be seen even today in the Anup mahal, Phool mahal and karan mahal of junagarh fort.
USTA ART is a broad term which is the combination of many different form of arts and techniques. In current times most popular form seen is Sunehri Munawwati Nakkashi work which means gold emboss work. This form of this art is preformed on walls, ceilings, glass, wood, marble and artifacts made of camel leather also. On all the mentioned surfaces very fine work is performed using best quality metarial. during its origin all the forms of usta art other than paintings were generally seen on walls but during British period need was felt to perform the usta art on such a material which remains light and easy to carry, so the pots which were made of camel leather and were used to carry oil and fragrance in those times became best alternate for doing gold work on them .
Sunehri Munawwati Nakkashi work or gold emboss work is completes in many stages. firstly smooth surface is prepared by applying natural primer than measurement is taken for the drawing designs, the designs are drawn on the surface than AKHBARA or first stage of work is done, in this the floral design is filled, using brush and color. When it is dried the floral design is embossed through brush by using a paste prepared by mixing pot clay powder, gum, jaggery and naushadar, on this embossed design a layer of yellow paint is applied and left it to hard dry again a coat of the yellow paint is applied and when it is dried the gold foils are applied and the details of emboss are drawn through very fine brush and design is filled with color.
In current times our team has performed Sunehri munawwati nakkashi work (USTA ART at world famous shrines of HAZRAT KHWAJA MOINUDDIN HASAN CHISTY, HAZRAT KHWAJA QUTUBUDDIN CHISTY, HAZRAT KHWAJA NIZAMUDDIN AULIYA on the other hand this work can be popularly seen at many havelis and heritage hotels also.
The other forms of Usta art are Jangali Sunehri, Rang Hamezi,Tantala sunehri and meenakari etc.
Miniature paintings are also the inseparable part of usta art after its arrival to India the first paintings ever drawn in bikaner were drawn by artists of usta family, there were many renowned artists in bikaner,most famous of them were Ustad Ali Raza, Ustad Ruknuddin, Ustad Kadir bux,and Ustad Murad bux etc.among them last court artist was hisamuddin usta who was honoured by Padma shree by government of India. The earlier miniature paintings by Usta artists were influenced by Mughal school of paintings but after arrival at bikaner these skilled artists developed separate school which is known as Bikaner school of paintings. The most popular paintings are Dhola maru ,paintings of Shah jahan and Mumtaz, and also painting Bani Thani which belongs to kishangarh,not only human figures but birds animals and botanical paintings were also the included in designs of usta art.
Recently new experiments are also carried in usta art, most important of them is use of Arabic, Persian and Urdu calligraphy which is done by using pure gold foils the best live examples can be seen at shrines of KHWAJA MOINUDDIN HASAN CHISTY, KHWAJA QUTUBUDDIN CHISTY, KHWAJA NIZAMUDDIN AULIYA.
The calligraphic work includes verses of holy QURAN, Poetry or Rubayeeyats.The calligraphy department of our team is headed by Ustad Shah Abdul Qayyum Saharanpuri who is listed in most efficient calligraphers of India in present times.
A wide range of beautiful handicrafts are also made by us by decorating them with usta art, which include wooden photo frames, marble items, camel leather lampshades, bottles (surahees) of all sizes.