Beating Lockdown Blues with Fretwork on Durga Puja Themes

By Sana Ahmed

Lockdown has indeed taken a toll on everyone, with majority of the time being spent in the house, people have resorted to a lot of creative ways to keep themselves engaged. Some of them are enrolling for a plethora of creative classes that are being offered online while some have chosen to go back to their long lost hobbies.

Mr. Udaya Lokre at work

Today, we bring to you one such story of Mr. Udaya Lokre who retired 9 years ago and uses his time in making fretwork. Fretwork is an ornamental design done on plywood which is typically openwork done with a fretsaw. It takes usually 5-6 hours to complete one frame.  First the design is conceptualized and then is traced on the plywood and then a fretsaw is used to carve the shape out which is later painted and framed.

Mr. Lokre who is IIT Bombay alumni, who recently had the opportunity to make fretwork mementos which were given out in the last IIT reunion held in Kolkata. His fretwork is sometimes inspired from his other hobbies which includes photography and golf. Apart from fretwork frames, he also makes fretwork fridge magnets and coasters.

Speaking to News Sense, the fretwork artist says that “I have learnt fretwork from my uncle when I was a child and as life progressed I never got the time to indulge in it. After I retired I decided to go back to pursue my hobby of fretwork and this lockdown has helped me churn out a lot of wonderful frames out of which some I have couriered to my friends”.

Talking about the future the fretwork artist says that due to the unavailability of the fretsaw in India his dream of conducting a fretwork workshop is still unrealised. He hopes that someday he would be able to bring fretsaws in the Indian Market which will help him to spread his craft. It is this zeal and zest that is required to beat the lockdown blues and which can enable us to remain motivated and productive in these testing time.