In the course of time when you find someone with a similar name or someone amiable, instead of calling them by their name you would prefer to call them friend or mita, especially if you are a Bengali. In the Bengali community mita is a common word. The Bengali meaning of mita is friend (generous, compatible, and lucky). In another case, we use ‘ra’ to show pluralism. So ‘mitara’ means ‘friends’. Also, in the Japanese language the word mitara means ‘If possible meet’.
This fine meeting between friends is the start of brand Mitara (craft and fashion). Mitara is the result of the thought of three friends, two Bangladeshi and one Japanese resident. Their main initiative is to make Bangladeshi culture well-known to Japan. The relationship between the Bengalis and Japanese is century old, even though history tells us that from the Year of 1972, 10th February, a diplomatic relationship was created between them. Historically Bengalis thought Japan of being a friendly nation.The 3 friends of the brand Mitara are Md. Anisur Rahman, Shadia Sarmin and Hiro Takahashi. Md. Anisur Rahman is a fashion designer by profession. He completed his diploma in Export Import Business and in Fashion Design in Japan. Shadia Sarmin is an artist, organiser of children activities and an art instructor. She completed her M. F. A in the faculty of Fine Arts under the Department of Charukola at Dhaka University. Hiro Takahashi studied business management in Japan. Even if there is a distinction between the countries and its people, their thoughts started with Bangla’s art and culture, the exchange of Bangladesh – Japanese culture and fashion. Even if they wanted to start by making social and already made products, based on the current circumstances they started it a bit differently. Since mask has become an essential item in our daily life, that’s why the first step of presenting our culture was done through masks. Usually surgical masks are light white-blue in color. Besides that, we also see one colored masks like white, yellow, red, blue, black, orange etc. Some people also gave preference to printed ones. And many more are creating their own masks according to their personal fashion. Even if the friends from Mitara have their mind on fashion, their main focus is on local culture. They thought, the more the country and its culture will be given importance in fashion, the current generation will learn to appreciate their culture more.
On the other hand, when foreign friends will go through this cultural exchange they will be able to learn about us, respect will also increase. On their masks, the design of Bangladesh’s first stamp, Nakshi kantha forms, Ludo game, Alpona, Flower-birds, national features of Bangladesh were featured.
Another interesting fact is that five child artists from Dhaka’s renowned ‘Monseez Art Academy’ have worked with Mitara. They are Sayma Ahad Khan, Mashrur Rahman, Fahmida Islam, Sanjida and Taskina. Children’s thought share really simple, and along with creativity, appeal of their work increases.
If the reliance of culture grows in our current generation, folk – crafts will expand. So, for improving the identity and dependence of local culture, we hope that Mitara’s initiatives will take the country one step further.
Mitara’s goal is to increase the demand of different products by their ability of multiple purpose uses. They are also thinking of how to increase the products made by using Japanese technology.