Award-winning Indian artisans conduct workshops here

Award-winning Indian artisans conduct workshops here
Mr Prakash Joshi with his Phad painting.
PHOTO: tabla!

Interested in learning textile block printing and the centuries-old Phad art style?

Two grassroots artisans from India - Mr Santosh Kumar Dhanopia in block printing and Mr Prakash Joshi in Phad painting - are conducting workshops in these fields, as part of Kala Tarang's latest exhibition Crafts Bazaar from May 10 to 13.

The workshops will be held at The Colonial @ Scotts on 31 Scotts Road.

Mr Dhanopia, a textile block printer from one of the major hand block printing hubs from Sanganer, Rajasthan, will be presenting the workshops on textile block painting.

It is known to be the earliest and simplest of all methods of textile printing.

While block printing may be a slow process, it is capable of producing very artistic results.

Photo: Facebook/Kala Tarang

Mr Dhanopia comes from a long line of hand block printers and has been practising the art since he was a teenager.

He learnt the intricacies of the art from his father - a skilled block printer himself.

His keen eye for patterns, designs, colours and textiles has led to his printed fabrics being coveted across India.

Mr Dhanopia has won many awards for his craft and has travelled around the world for demonstrations and workshops.

As for Mr Joshi, this will be his second trip to Singapore. Last year, he was here for a two-day workshop to teach the Phad style of painting.

He is from the well-known Joshi family of Bhilwara that has been involved in the art form for almost 600 years.

Phad painting or Phad, which means "to read out a story", is a religious scroll painting and folk painting practised in Rajasthan.

They depict the stories of folk deity - Pabuji, a reincarnation of Laxman and Devnarayan, a reincarnation of Vishnu.

The characters are always painted facing each other instead of the viewer, as they are depicted to be in conversation with one another.

The paintings provide the backdrop against which the songs, dances and narrations are used to create an evening of magic and entertainment usually in the centre of the village.

The intricacy of Mr Joshi's art has won him many awards, including the prestigious National Merit Certificate and National Awards by the government of India in 2008 and 2009, and the UNESCO Award in 2014.

The workshops with the artists will not only offer participants a hands-on experience, but they will also get an insight on the respective age-old Indian art.

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