Participants at the SPIC MACAY Convention will get an opportunity to interact with artists during their intensives.

Come June 8 and India’s colourful craft traditions will find a new destination… IIT-Madras. At SPIC MACAY’s 2nd International Convention, being held in association with IGNCA, IIT-Madras and The Hindu, 17 crafts and its practitioners will converge for intensive workshops, student interactions and exhibitions.

Neerja Sarin, who is co-ordinating the programme, says “This is a great opportunity for students to learn more about the myriad crafts and the techniques from award-winning master craftsmen themselves. And for the masters too, sharing their skill and passing it on to a new generation will prove to be a gratifying experience.”

The intensive workshops are on from June 9 to 13, 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Among the highlights are sessions on Kolam making, terracotta pottery, Kalamkari, Patua painting, Kutch tie & dye, Gond and Phad folk paintings, Mughal wood carving, Cheriyal scroll painting, Sanghneri block prints and patachitra.

For the artists, many of them first- timers, it will be show time. Gayathri Sankarnarayan will teach different ways to draw a kolam (bright patterns drawn outside homes in South India) and the nuances involved. Similarly, Patua artist Anwar Chitrakar, whose works are displayed at the New Delhi Metro, T-2 international airport in Mumbai and Victoria & Albert Museum, London, will highlight the trademark profession of the Pattua community of West Bengal, where a unique feature is that religion is no bar. Ramaiya Thangaiya, a potter from Pudukottai, known for his large temple figurines, will be at IIT to share his knowledge with the students.

Jonnalagadda Niranjan is a Kalamkari or Qalamkari artist, who studied classical dance in order to give the right stances to his art. His great grandfather’s paintings are displayed at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. Niranjan is promoting natural dyes of India, and is now working on Chintz, inspired by the Chintz of his forefathers.

Similarly, Abdullah Khatri belongs to a family of traditional tie and dye printers of the Khatri community of Kutch. He has worked with international designer, Christina Kim, and leading Indian designers such as Abraham & Thakor, Rajesh Pratap Singh and Tarun Tahiliani. His aim is to find a unique synthesis between traditional craft skills and the contemporary market, both nationally and internationally.

Among the others who will helm the intensives are contemporary artist Anjolie Ela Menon, Bhanumurthy of Kalakshetra (weaving), Sardar Hussain (Mughal wood carving), Hema Devi (paper machier with Madhubani), Akshay K. Bariki (Patachitra), Rajesh Chaity Vangad (Warli), D. Nageshwar Nakash (Cheriyal scroll painting), Ishwar Naik (Chittara painting), Santosh K. Dhanopia (Sanganer block print), Kalyan Joshi (Phad) and Kalabai & Anand Shyam (Gond tribal art).

The creations of these artists have found expression on greeting cards, envelops, T-shirts, dupattas, stoles, saris and more. They will be on sale at the venue. For the schedule and other information, log on to www.spicmacay.com.

The inauguration

SPIC MACAY’s 2nd International Convention, held in association with IGNCA, IIT-Madras and The Hindu, will be inaugurated by Dr. K. Rosaiah, Governor of Tamil Nadu, on June 8, 5.30 p.m. Vakkom Purushothaman, Governor of Mizarom, is the chief guest, with Chinmaya R. Gharekhan, president, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, and N. Ravi, Editor-inChief, The Hindu, as special guests. The inaugural will be followed by a violin concert by Prof. T.N. Krishnan and Viji Krishnan at 6.30 p.m. and a Hindustani vocal by vidushi Girija Devi at 8 p.m.