Pajaki (pah-yonk-ee), paper chandeliers, are part of age-old Polish traditions of welcoming spring, rejoicing around Easter or Christmas, ushering in good fortune during New Year, weddings or childbirth. The appeal of these chandeliers lies in the fact that they can be made from simple, natural materials such as straw and dried flowers, to begin with.
The ethnic tales associated with Pajaki, potray them to be as ‘symbols’ or ‘artefacts’ that protect the inmates of Polish households from evil, and also double up as ‘decorative items’. Sadly, in modern times, the art of Pajaki-making is getting faded. Designer Karolina Merska, is among the few Polish artists, who is ardently working on preserving the pretty Pajaki tradition for the posterity. She was recently in the Capital, to conduct a Pajaki-making workshop. The latter was facilitated by the Polish Institute New Delhi.
The day-long workshop witnessed the enthusiasm, hard work, and creativity of participants, being fashioned under the guidance of the talented Karolina into stunning chandeliers.
Interestingly, amidst vibrant paper discs, flamboyant pom-poms, vivid threads and lots of smiles … something more was shaped beyond the Pajaki. These were friendships and bonding!