Project #3860

Design Education for Traditional Artisans in Kutch

by Kala Raksha
Sep 16, 2010

KRV to the World! KRV Progress Report 15-9-10

Nitesh working on theme board
Nitesh working on theme board


From April through August KRV held Courses 3, 4 and 5 of our six course year. Traditional Artisan students studied Market Orientation, Concept & Communication, and Collection Development. They have learned for whom to create, and how to shape their creations into collections of dynamic products.

INSTITUTIONAL DEVELOPMENT To link Kala Raksha Vidhyalaya to the Trust, and extend KRV education, in April Kala Raksha began a series of day long design workshops for Kala Raksha staff. Our premise is that design is useful for everyone! Permanent Faculty members Dayalalbhai and Harishbhai taught the first workshop: color theory and practical application.

To link to other educational institutions, Kala Raksha Vidhyalaya hosted interns from Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology, The Institute for Rural Management, and the National Institute of Fashion Technology.

In May, KRV graduates Abdulla Khatri, Mohamed Hussain Khatri, Zuber Khatri, Dayalal Kudecha, and Ramji Maheshwari began a design project with Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology interns Malovika, Sunayana and Kimberly. Two of the graduates were on a financial aid program wherein they will partially pay their fees in kind. The project is important because it pilots our in-kind aid program. All will work together to design products for this year’s Kala Raksha collections. This will insure that the graduates utilize their education in creating new collections, and benefit Kala Raksha with additions to our existing product line- a win-win proposition! Abdullabhai- “This was the first time I could really use what I learned all together. I made my own collection!”

In June and July, Deepali Gupta, a student of the Institute for Rural Management carried out a feasibility study for developing KRV post graduate studies. She interviewed many of the 90 KRV graduates extensively about their needs and desires, and worked with the top of the line IRMA faculty to create a curriculum for a KRV course in business management.

In June and July, Radhika Agarwal and Devanshi Sanghvi, two students from the National Institute for Fashion Technology worked with this year’s KRV students to develop the apparel for their final collections. The lived with the artisan students for a month, listened to their dreams, and helped them forge them into realities by creating sketches, patterns and prototypes.

Radhika, NIFT student: “It was an amazing experience for me to work at Kala Raksha! I learned a lot. I’m looking forward for more of such opportunities.”

OUTREACH A New Film From Kala Raksha Vidhyalaya! This year, Kala Raksha completed a documentary Film Project entitled “The Masters’ Voices”. Funded by Sir Dorabji Tata Trust and Seagate and directed by Nilosree Biswas, “The Master’s Voices” comprises six short films portraying the understanding of design though the voices of embroiderers of Kala Raksha, and KRV artisan advisers. The project holds important archival material. For a more widespread audience, the material was edited into one forty-five minute film of the same title.

Artisan Design Logo KRV has developed a new brand, Artisan Design, to be launched this year. A logo was designed by the National Institute of Design as a classroom project. The brand is intended to raise awareness and value for the artisan’s complete involvement in creation.

Kala Raksha Vidhyalayaa Graduates Teach and Learn in the USA For the month of July, KRV Graduate Harkhuben Bhojraj Rabari and her colleague artisan Meghiben Meriya taught Kutch embroidery traditions and marketed their designs in six cities of the USA. They represented the work of 90 graduates of KRV and 1,000 women artisans. Beginning with the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market, they visited museums, college campuses, and textile centers. Sales totaled to over US$ 37,000.

Harkhuben: “I learned the value of our traditional work. People appreciate it and they like it most when it is made by our own hands!” (see attached report)

THANKS TO GLOBAL GIVING! KRV has a long way to go before raising the funds we need to operate our school this year, but in just a few months since joining Global Giving, we have raised almost $950, including the generous match from Global Giving on Matching Day. We utilized the funds to complete our film, “The Masters’ Voices,” and toward the institution operational expenses. One person, YOU, can make a difference in the lives of our very creative constituency.

THE NEXT PHASE Sustainability! That is our challenge. Kala Raksha Vidhyalaya would like to never have to search for donations again. To make that possible we are thinking of ways to become self sustaining. It is a huge challenge for an educational institution. We welcome any entrepreneurial ideas –and ideas for gaining increasing visibility-from our supporters.

Anwar with batik inspired by Rann of Kutch
Anwar with batik inspired by Rann of Kutch
Hina with sketches inspired by a rock
Hina with sketches inspired by a rock
Sajana helping Hina think out a theme
Sajana helping Hina think out a theme
Harkhuben markets her design in Santa Fe
Harkhuben markets her design in Santa Fe
Harkhuben & Meghiben at USA embroidery workshop
Harkhuben & Meghiben at USA embroidery workshop



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Organization Information

Kala Raksha

Location: ta. Bhuj, Kutch, Gujarat - India
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Judy Frater
Kutch, Gujarat India

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

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