Louba Schild,bids adieu to her adopted land – Aranmula

Kathakali artiste and teacher Louba Schild, founder of Vijnana Kalavedi, bids adieu to her adopted land where she lived as a Malayali for 40 years. Her life in Aranmula was dedicated to promoting and preserving the art and culture of the land she adopted as her own.

There is very little of the French in her except for her name and accented English. Louba Schild is otherwise traditionally Malayali, in attire and attitude. Not surprising. For Louba has been in Kerala for 40 years now. Her life in Aranmula was dedicated to promoting and preserving the art and culture of the land she adopted as her own. Through Vijnana Kalavedi, which she established in 1977, Louba has been conserving the praxis of a rich heritage. She has passed on the baton to a large number of people from around the world who have been part of this enriching Vijnana Kalavedi experience.

Louba has now, quite surprisingly, decided to bring down the curtain on this cultural enterprise. Vijnana Kalavedi will be formally closed down by the end of this month. They had their final performance the other day at what looked a rather desolate venue. And in a few months’ time, Louba will be on her flight back home to Paris along with her 94-year-old mother, Nadia Schild Chipiloff.

“Don’t ask me why I’m doing this. It is a personal decision,” Louba tells you even before you try asking her this question. Prod her further and you realise that there is no rancour or ill-feeling, but it certainly appears to go beyond just ‘personal.’

Louba was drawn to Kerala’s rich culture, pulsating art and heritage. She studied Kathakali from great masters like Kalamandalam Krishnan Nair, never missed a chance to perform, and dabbled in other classical and traditional arts. Through her institution she tried to pass on what she experienced to others who came from other lands. But somewhere down the line she realised the futility of all this.

“I think my biggest regret has been learning Kathakali. I should have remained a dedicated spectator rather than a practitioner. This art, like Indian culture, is so deep-rooted that anyone like me would be able to touch only the periphery. Even after all these years of learning and performing I have realised that it is still incomplete. There are certain things, simple though it might seem, that cannot be expressed by a person who is alien to this culture, this ethos. All these years I have been doing this, teaching, learning. I should have left it alone,” feels Louba.

Aranmula kannadi – New model released !

Another beautiful new model of Aranmula kanadi (Aranmula mrror) was released yesterday!

The new model is designed by the famous artisan Mr.K.P.Ashokan, who made the most popular Aranmula Kannadi models during the last few decades.

He said that he is very pleased to release the new model on this Onam occasion, through Aranmula Kannadi Online Shop – aranmulamirror.com, the biggest shop of Aranmula Kannadi on web. It is a fixed stand type (Peedom) which weighs about 1.3kg and having the dimension 10.0 x 7.5 Inches and the mirror size of 4.5 inches.
The speciality of the model is its abundant hand work!

Aranmula Vallasadya

Aranmula vallasadya is usually served to the oarsmen of snake boats in a ceremonious ritual at the Sree Parthasarathy Temple at Aranmula.The world famous sadya contains about 56 delicious dishes including 4-5 variety of ‘Payasam’.

The custom of this unique ritual is that devotees who offer Vallasadya to the presiding deity have to serve the feast to the crew of the Palliyodams, which are the snake boats belonging to the presiding deity. Feast served to the crew is considered to be an offering to the Lord himself.

According to my calculations more than 40,000 peoples were participated in the vallasadya during the last year.

Various dishes are served in the background of songs sung to the tune of ‘Kuchelavritham Vanchipattu’. And through a song a team of singers will announce the dishes required for the people . “Kudineeru Kodukkenam Madikoodathe hoyi…Gajapada Valipathil Pappadam Venam hoyi…” these are the songs for serving drinking water and ‘pappadam’.

Aranmula Parthasaradhi Temple

Aranmula Parthasaradhi Temple

It is one of the 108 temples and one among the celestial abodes of Lord Vishnu revered by the tamil poets called Alwars(1stmillenium century bc)in their hymns.

Aranmula Parthasaradhi Temple is a major temple in Kerala. The Main idol of worship is Parthasaarathy(Krishna),who was the leader of Arjuna (the pandava prince)in Kurukshetra War. It is said that Arjuna built this temple at Nilackal near Sabarimalai to expiate for the sin of having killed Karna on the battlefield which was against the dharma of killing an unarmed enemy.The idol was brought to Aranmula in a raft made of six pieces of bamboo and
hence the name Aranmula (six pieces of bamboo). It is also believed that Lord Vishnu revealed
the knowledge of creation to Lord Brahma at this place.

The temple is on the left bank of the Pampa River.The temple has four towers over its entrances on its outer wall.The eastern tower is accessed through a flight of 18 steps.The 57 steps from the northern tower leads to river Pampa. The temple is noted for its architecture (vasthu) and fine mural paintings which dates to the 18th century.

The temple is on the left bank of the Pampa River.The sacred jewels (Thiruvaabharanam)of Lord Ayyappa is taken from Aranmula Temple ,in procession to Sabarimalai during the festival season every year.The temple is also known for the watersports (Aranmula vallam kali/boat race)involving a spectacular procession of snake boats.

The Aranmula mirror is also much related to the history of the temple.

Aranmula boat race(Uthrattadi vallamkali) 2009 will be a great event

The Aranmula Boat Race(aranmula vallam kali) is organized during the Onam festival which takes place in the month of August/September.

This interesting race is held at Pampa river in Aranmula, Kerala. It is a two-day event and has a very intriguing legend behind the celebration. The story tells of a Brahmin who pledged to feed one pilgrim each day. Then one day Lord Krishna disguised himself as a pilgrim and appeared before the Brahmin. Overjoyed at getting “darshan” of the Lord, he swore to offer 51 measures of rice and the provision for the Thiruvona Sadya (Onam feast) at the Aranmula Parthasarathy Temple, situated near the Pampa river. These offerings were arranged to be carried across the river by boats. However, adversary from another village seizes the boat carrying the offerings. The villagers rush to the rescue of the Brahmin with boats. Afterward, a fleet of palliyodam (huge luxurious snake boat used by gods and royalty) carried the offerings to the temple. Since then, then Aranmula Uthrattadi Vallamkali is organized on the Pampa river where the legend is enacted.

A fleet of fourty boats participate in the race. On the first day of the race, a water carnival is held on the lake, with huge idol of Lord Krishna ( partha sarathi )and children dressed as nymphs and princesses. On the second day, snake boats are assembled near the temple; each boat representing a village along the banks of the Pampa River. The boats, carrying helmsmen, oarsmen and singers, are beautifully decorated with silk parasols and golden lace. The proper race begins in the afternoon amidst great euphoria

Aranmula Kannadi – A rich tradition

Aranmula Kannadi
The popularity of Aranmula Kannadi, a unique metal mirror, across the seas has taken Aranmula, a small hamlet on the banks of the Pampa, to the world rural tourism map.

This marvelous piece of ancient metallurgy, that gives distortion-free images, has been a key attraction to many a tourist, especially those from abroad.The ever-increasing demand for the metal mirror itself shows its growing popularity.Aranmula Kannadi or Arnamula Metal-mirror making is a long, intricate process that needs patience.

Secret recipe Of arnamula Kannadi

Some ‘undisclosed’ metals are alloyed with copper and tin to case the metal mirror in typical clay moulds. The method used is the age-old ‘lost-wax’ process.

The craftsman melts the metals in a pit-furnace fitted with a manual blower and pours it into clay moulds of different sizes.

The moulded metal disc will be mounted on a wooden plank to polish it using fine powder of burnt clay and castor oil on a jute cloth. The polished discs are mounted on bronze frames with exquisite carvings. It takes at least two weeks to make a dozen metal mirrors and the smallest of them (one-and-a-half inch) costs Rs.1,200

The legend

The origin of Aranmula Kannadi is closely linked with Sree Parthasarathjy Temple at Aranmula. Legend has it that the local king brought eight bronze-smith families to Aranmula in connection with the renovation of the temple centuries ago.

The artisans settled at Aranmula even after completion of the renovation work. Their descendants became lazy and a public nuisance, inviting the ire of the king who ordered their eviction.

The desperate artisans sought refuge in the presiding deity. The artisan families had a divine vision that presented the composition of a reflective piece that gives distortion-free images.

The artisans jointly molded a magnificent crown and presented it to the king. A pleased king not only pardoned them but also honored them with land and jewels.

Since then, the artisans took up metal mirror-making their profession, presenting a masterpiece in metallurgy to the world.

Welcome to AranmulaKannadi.org

Aranmulakannadi.org is an authenticate website for providing everything about world famous Aranmula Kannadi. Aranmula Kannadi is unique metal mirror from kerala. where the metal mirror-making tradition survives ( 14th century ) at the village of Aranmula, Kerala, India. Here, a cast high-tin bronze mirror of 33% tin with highly polished surface or reflective properties is made which is comparable to, if not much better than, modern mercury glass-coated mirrors. Aranmula Kannadi is very traditional beautiful and precious. It is believed that having an Aranmula Kannadi will bring luck and prosperity in to the life.

aranmula kannadi

Aranmula Kannadi is:

  • Extra ordinary traditional hand made metal mirror, is Famous for bringing prosperity, luck and wealth in to life
  • Aranmula Kannadi is famous for its secretive construction method and uniqueness in the make which get Patent protected with a Geographical Indication tag
  • It is the only metal mirror available, Unlike Ordinary Glass mirror , Image from Aranmula Kannadi is reflected from upper surface of reflecting material , where in Glass mirror image reflected from bottom layer where mercury is pasted . So real image is only captured in the Aranmula Kannadi.
  • Aranmula Kannadi is one among 8 auspicious items included famous astamagalaya set ,which usually used for very auspicious function like marriage
  • Aranmula Kannadi is impossible to make a duplicated Item, because of its lesser Price, and its make details only known to few people in one family belong to Aranmula and it is kept as a family secret
  • Mysteries in its creation, unequaled in its beauty, the Aranmula Kannadi is a unique object.
  • Exclusive to Aranmula this is made of metal, not glass! There in lies its uniqueness and its creation a closely guarded secret. Known to only four families, has been handed down from father to son for generations. Therein lies its mystery
  • Aranmula is a little village in the district of Pathanamthitta, which is well known for its ancient temple dedicated to Lord Sree Krishna as Parthasarathy,the colorful snake boat Regatta and the Aranmula Kannadi.
  • The British Museum in London has a 45 centimeter tall Aranmula metal mirror in its collection
Aranmula Val Kannadi
Aranmula Val Kannadi

Aranmula Kannadi related story about Shiva and Parvathi

There are so many stories and myths about related to the origin of Aranmula Kannadi. One of such stories are related to the Hindu Goddess Parvathi.

Aranmula Kannadi is described as the mirror of goddess Parvathi which brings prosperity to those who keep it welcomes you in the drawing room of the elites.

If anybody knows any such well known myths and stories about Aranmula Kannadi, Please put your comments below this post.

Cleaning Process Of Aranmula Kannadi

Aranmula Kannadi needs to take utmost care while cleaning. the ignorance in its cleaning may damage the mirror. so here is a how to clean aranmula kannadi described.

How to Clean the Mirror Surface Of Aranmula Kannadi

If some one by mistake touches the mirror, their finger prints can be seen on the surface. this can be cleaned off, only if you rub it with cotton /velvet cloth smoothly on the surface of the mirror within 5 minutes in vertical direction and if it is not properly cleaned, then sprinkle a bit Brass cleaner available in the market like “Dhara Cleaner ” on velvet cloth or mirror cleaning cloth ,Fold the Cloth to 3 layers, Cleaning Drops should be upper layer and Clean with Bottom layer on aranmul kannadi and hold it in a slanting position allowing the dust and other particles rubbed off from the reflective surfacefont

How to clean the frame of Aranmula Kannadi

Take a piece of smooth cotton cloth, fold it twice and put drops of brasso on the cloth and rub it with the other part of the cloth. If any change is seen on the frame by rubbing with brasso ,then clean it with a piece of smooth cotton cloth.