With an aim of keeping alive the age old Nakashi art and its traditional techniques, in newer ways, Earth Gallery has come up with a new initiative called Innovating Traditions. A month-long workshop at the gallery has been witnessing a vibrant exchange of ideas, as the 15 professional artists have been interacting with experts from different facets of the Nakashi art, Nageshwar, his son Sai Kiran and Lester Paul. The workshop started off on March 2 and will go on till April 2 at the Earth Art Gallery and the resulting art will be later displayed as an art show.
Curated by the gallery director Lipika Rao Gandra, the workshop saw innovations in terms of exchange of techniques between the traditional form of Nakashi doll making and practicing contemporary artists.
What were earlier practised in Cheriyal of Warangal district as dolls to narrate stories in the form of “Kaki Padagollu’’ in the Telangana region, today finds very few viewers and adopted as decorative art for homes. “Even this transition has found limited users and before the few families involved in this art form give up due to lack of sustenance, Earth art gallery has taken up this project to resurrect it in newer ways of expressing its original beauty,’ says Lipika Rao.
The workshop also identified problems Nakashi artists face, which include sourcing of material required for the art from, marketing of products and innovating art works to suit modern tastes. Alternative techniques like replacing tamarind paste which is originally used for Nakashi dolls is to a large extant replaced by paper mache due to difficulty in procuring it. Also the ponniki wood used by Nakashi artists which has become rarer to source is replaced by wire mesh and thermacol, the water based colours are replaced by other variants like acrylic colours.
Innovative ideas in mural art making, standing sculptures, mask and newer concepts with have been developed by these artists, through the course of the workshop.
These art works are more suitable for modern tastes and can be marketed globally.The materials are much cheaper and the final products are proposed to be exported using e-commerce and social networking platforms .
All the products manufactured at the workshop will be displayed at the Earth Art Gallery and then further will be sold through an E-Commerce site.