The Red Earth Design Mela is into its seventh edition

After the searing summer heat, Delhi awaits cool breeze, drenched roads and natural showers. Also awaited is the Red Earth Design Mela, now in its seventh year.

The festival is intended to revive the forgotten traditions, pioneering contemporary creations and cultural practices related to the monsoon. It is on at Alliance Francaise de Delhi till August 12, 2012.

The design mela showcases designs by country’s best creative talents: from fashion to food, products, home-decor, accessories, crafts and music inspired by the season. The exhibition has various genres: abstract, landscape and nature, flora and fauna, the human element, divinity, monsoon objects and the city.

It is a treasure trove for art lovers. There are paintings with themes of south Mumbai, organic posters, birthday cards made on handmade paper with screen printing, colourful badges with imprints of Indian stamps, beautifully handmade rakhis, dupattas and mini blankets made of recycled saris. Also on sale are special t-shirts which help us understand and treat chakra imbalances of our body.

The ongoing festival has a lot more to offer, as a lot of events under several other subheads: festivals, recitations, music and walks are also scheduled to take place. Poems and stories that feature in poems by Urdu, Punjabi, Hindi, English, and French from poets like Ezra Pound, Amir Khusro, Rumi, Bulleh Shah, Nirala and Mahadevi Verma will be recited.

There is another exciting addition this year. A special monsoon walk, the barsati walk, will take you to the last few Barsatis of Delhi to explore these open residential spaces which have been home to many a struggling genius. There are also a ‘Colour Walk’ which will take place in Nizamuddin, where we explore blue and green in the environs of the sacred geography of the area.

The festival will end with celebration of Janamashthami, featuring a special Haveli Sangeet raag sewa (ritual offering of music for Krishna). The guests will have to dress like Krishna or a Gopi and carry a pot (matka) full of marigold flowers.