A grand museum named 'Odam,' that reflects the amazing tradition and growth of the centuries-old Kannur handloom is now open in Payyambalam in Kannur. Archaeology and Archive Minister Ahamed Devarkovil inaugurated the museum, which will offer free entry to visitors from 10 am to 4.45 pm, from May 17.
The museum has been set up at the heritage building at Payyambalam owned by the Kerala State Handloom Development Corporation. The museum, built at a cost of Rs 1.2 crore, pays homage to one of the iconic handloom traditions in the state. It was the state museum department that renovated the heritage building that has been built in the Indo-European architectural style by spending Rs 60 lakh.
History of weaving, modern technology and more
The Museum of Kerala History and Heritage, which is a nodal agency of the state government, has taken the initiative to set up the handloom museum in Kannur.
Ten galleries that showcase the origin of the fabric, beginning of handloom, the history of weaving machines, the outfits in various ages, history of Kannur handloom, various types of handloom and the modern handloom technology are arranged here.
First of its kind
The visitors will have the facility to try their hands at weaving handloom cloth by operating the machinery, said Kannur MLA Kadannappally Ramachandran. They could also purchase high-quality handloom cloths and outfits here. The museum authorities claim that this is the first of its kind in the country where the visitors could see and understand the evolution of handloom.
Kani Chandran is the curator of the museum. "It is said that the first description of Kerala and its textile trade with Arabs and more are described in the Periplus of the Erythrean Sea. This would mean that Kerala was making handloom from that time," he said.
"Odam museum showcases 10 galleries of information, evolution of handloom, equipment and more, based on the information available from that time. It will be further expanded once we collect more fabric samples, olden equipment and the like," he added.