Folk Arts & Crafts Revival

Strategic Focus

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Handmade Tales

“While all answers to the manifold queries are not to be found in museums, across the vistas of time one glimpses a variety of materials, processes, embellishments, woven into a common fabric. This is what I feel constitutes a tradition. Though some of this may fade and decay, a vital part of it lives and constitutes what may be termed the spirit or soul of a people. It is the sustenance from which are born the myriad creative forms on which posterity grows, thrives and burgeons into ever-new revitalized generations. It is this essence that constitutes real museums…Every item worthy to be displayed has to be alive, vital. Museums must now serve the general public, Lay open the almost endless landscapes of the entire globe. As also reflect the close intimate elements that constitute our daily life – And thus become an indispensable part of popular education.

And so museums, naturally, enable people to understand life.” – Kamala Devi Chattopadhyay – address at the World Crafts Council, 1986.”

In keeping with Kamala Devi’s vision, and spirit, Handmade Tales is a tribute to the woman who stood for India’s crafts, and culture. Through the Handmade Tales series, we revisit the old traditions, and seek to understand India’s past, through a crafts-based narrative.

Information about the project can be found here.

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Cluster Development

The project aims to revive and preserve the traditional arts, crafts and culture of various communities – especially the tribes, of India. Through our activities we aim to alleviate the existing poverty level, and develop sustainably, the arts and crafts of such communities, which are representatives of their culture and existence. Our mission is to support the creation, revival and preservation of original art/craft work which is rooted in a particular community/tradition or belongs to a certain tribal culture. We partner with artists to eliminate middlemen and are committed to social and economic betterment of such communities. To know more, click here.

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Livelihoods & Craft Entrepreneurship

For us, languishing crafts are those :

a) which have limited/no practitioners from the new generation

b) have less than 25 practitioners

To revive such crafts, we train the younger generation, and women from low income backgrounds to learn, practice and continue the tradition. This enables us to empower them in earning a stable livelihood as well.

Our endeavours to encourage Craft Entrepreneurship can be viewed here.

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The Green Room Fellowship

The Fellowship in an opportunity for young professionals (and students) to explore ideas and possibilities set alongside the vast craft and art traditions India. The Happy Hands Foundation hosts the fellowship once every two years with a view to foster meaningful collaborations between rural artisans and urban creative minds focused to create impact in a community through a radical approach. The fellowship enables artisans and fellows to learn from each other, and create innovative, sustainable solutions for crafts and the community.


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