The Pottery Colony of Mumbai: A Story of the Artisan Heritage of Kumbharwada

The busy streets of Dharavi, Mumbai, is a hidden treasure which is called pottery colony aka Kumbharwada. It has weathered the test of time for almost a century. The majority of the city’s potter’s live in Kumbharwada. It is a monument to the illustrious legacy of hand craftsmanship that has been passed down through the years.

The History of Pottery

Kumbharwada is briefly called “Potter’s Colony.” This community has its origins in Gujarat’s Saurashtra state. This thriving colony, which covers 22 hectares, is home to some 1,400–1,500 families. 700–800 of whom are still actively involved in pottery-making. Early in the morning is when pottery is made. Then, in the afternoon, the kilns are ignited. Many households continue to use conventional stoves. However, some have switched to gas burners in order to lower pollution. This also enhances temperature control.

Kumbharwada life

Kumbharwada has its share of difficulties despite having highly trained craftspeople. The colony is situated in one of the world’s most densely populated locations. The houses are small, with only two stories.

The Architectural Outlook

●The top story is utilised for dwelling
●The first floor is dedicated to a workshop
●Because there is no ventilation, the smoke from the ovens lingers and makes the space stuffy for the people who live there.
●Situated in Dharavi, It is dubbed the world’s largest slum

Handicraft Despite Challenges

The Kumbharwada artisans persevere in producing beautiful clay lamps, pots, plates, bowls, and other pottery in spite of these difficulties. The daily demand for these products can exceed 2000–2500 during festivals like Diwali and Navratri. Clay is gathered from various locations, formed into a wheel, and then roasted in an oven and let to dry in the sun.

Conserving Historical Sites in the Modern World

The Chinese product inflow has put the Kumbharwada ceramic trade under pressure recently. Those who value customs and history, on the other hand, nevertheless choose to purchase mats and diyas made by the talented hands of #039 potters and Kumbharwada. The community is still strong, and the younger generation learns from the elders, which guarantees the art form’s future success.

The Importance of Kumbharwada Culture

Kumbharwada also represents Mumbai’s diverse cultural landscape despite it’s pottery significance.

Apart from ceramics, they also exhibit the artistry and ingenuity of their makers.

Mumbai’s cultural legacy is embodied in Kumbharwada products, which serve as a constant reminder of the city and its origins and customs.

They are more than just goods for sale.

Travelling to Kumbharwada

A trip to the region is essential for anyone interested in learning more about Kumbharwada’s rich cultural legacy.

90 Feet Road, Kumbharwada, Dharavi is the postal address for the district.

Kumbharwada’s bustling streets and winding lanes provide a window into the daily lives of its people as well as the elaborate pottery-making process.

The talent and attention to detail that go into making each piece of pottery are visible to visitors.

Examining the Trails of Kumbharwada

Strolling around Kumbharwada’s walkways, visitors are thrilled by the sights and sounds of pottery making.

The earthy smell of the clay, the rhythmic sound of the spinning wheel.

The sight of skilled hands sculpting the clay into gorgeous shapes all combine to create a truly immersive and unforgettable experience.


Beyond only being a settlement made of pottery, Kumbharwada is a vibrant example of Mumbai’s rich cultural past. A trip to Kumbharwada provides a singular chance to discover more about this legacy, interact with the craftspeople who preserve it, and help a community that has continuously surpassed all expectations.

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