Each Sesath carries with it a long history, rich in religious, traditional, and cultural values. Considered a symbol of prosperity, Sesath were used by ancient aristocrats to boast about their pride and authority. Sesath is also used at weddings and funerals and is commonly seen in temples. Carrying the Sesatha Peramuna at pageants and festivals has been a tradition recorded in Kandyan history. The villagers are proud of their heritage which boasts links to the arrival of Buddhism in the country.
The making of traditional Sesath continues in one solitary village, namely, Unaveruva in the Matale district. It remains the main livelihood of communities in Unaveruwa and the industry is only protected by elders who transfer their knowledge to the next generation. The Sesath craft is unique to each family, sometimes even to each member of the family with their own unique style.
The village itself is steeped in tradition and is socially and economically marginalized with large numbers of households dependent on their artisan heritage for their income, with very little growth, expansion, or innovation. This website is one means of encouraging the younger generation to explore new market opportunities via digital technology and preserve the age-old artisanal craftsmanship of their village. We invite you to get involved and support this community in diverse ways, and to help ensure the preservation of an artisanal community.
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