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Mohammad Yousuf – Mute Artist With Golden Hands

Written by KashmirUnheard

Video By: Nadiya Shafi | Article By: Nusrat Ali

Mohammad Yousuf Muran, in his fifties from Narwara Srinagar is a brilliant example of inspiration. He and his elder brother late Abdul Ahad Muran was deaf and mute from birth. Both brothers started learning wood carving and wood art designs on walnut wood from a young age.

Carrying the legacy of their family as members of the third generation Muhammad Yousuf Muran and his brother never let their disabilities to come in the way of becoming one of the most talented woodcarvers whose creations have made it to the prestigious global markets.
From animals to Hindu mythological gods and goddesses, to world leaders ranging from Mahatma Gandhi and Saddam Hussein, they have carved it all. They even presented to the Iranian Ambassador a miniature lookalike of Srinagar’s Jamia mosque.

After the death of Abdul Ahad, the elder brother in 2017, Mohammad Yousuf still continues to make various art forms and sell them to people. He does not let his disability, health or age hinder his work and has recently begun working on some major projects.

Yousuf‘s art transports you to 15th century Kashmir. A Kashmiri woman on a spinning wheel, a shawl weaver, a man grinding spices in a traditional kunz or a stone artefact and another ready to smoke from a hookah.

Muran family has been carving business for almost 200 years now. They had a unit in Karachi before the partition of India and Pakistan. Their forefathers used to sell carving in Iran through the silk route. But now at times Mohammad Yousuf, the only Artist left in his family feels no one in the family shall carry on this tradition as there is little recognition of their craft. Their products are being sold at higher price by local traders but they are paid just peanuts. The traders have made billions with their work but no one knows the real people, Muraan brothers behind them.

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