BAMBOO - TRIPURA
Bamboo craft in Tripura is much evolved and one can probably not find any neighbourhood in Tripura which remains untouched by this 'wonder material'. The documentation and design project was commissioned by Tripura Bamboo Mission to The Outreach Programmes cell at NID. Garima was one of the designers on the team. Each designer was responsible for his/her own concepts and final deliverable. She documented the craft on the field in 6 villages, Agartala, Bangalore and Ahmedabad. The study included material processes prior to the design exercise at various centres like IPIRTI, BCDI and CFBI at NID. Detailed documentation of the study can be accessed,
on request, from the NID Knowledge Management Centre (KMC).
El’ bo is an outcome of a 9-month long project and looks at design as a system instead of looking at it as a product. The tripod stool from this series has been widely published nationally and internationally.
CARVED WOOD - M.P.
Craft in Madhya Pradesh is rich in content and skill. This particular study and design development exercise were focused on wood carving. The craft workshop was organized by M.P. Hastashilp Evam Hathkargha Vikas Nigam Ltd., who supply furniture to
Government Emporia across the country.
A quick visit to the local furniture market made it clear that the pieces were overwhelming in form and textures. While the skill set was good, the craftsmen could use some direction with product design.
The project presented the opportunity to learn about other crafts from the state that were incorporated in many products. Therefore the craft repertoire at hand was wider including carving, Gond painting, and Bagh printing. This made it possible to bring in variety to the design language.
The design deliverables included design and prototyping a mix of domestic furniture, both formal and casual.
BAMBOO - GOA
To work with women artisans of Virnoda in Pernem was a great opportunity and a challenge too. The skill levels of all fifteen women were extremely varied. A few were skilled, but most of them were beginners. This made group-work difficult and each one had to be assigned different products according to the skill level suited to that person.
The focus of the workshop was to develop products using the available skill set and locally available materials. Therefore whatever value additions and variations that were made to the existing products did not disturb the existing work ecosystem. The intention was to keep the goals realistic and to encourage the artisans to continue working in this sector without having to worry about sourcing materials from far off cities.
The workshop was an initiative of South Asia Foundation. It aimed at product development by involving designers and artisans to share their expertise on a common platform. The research at various stages revealed concerns towards the functioning of self-help groups, financing and coordination, lack of education, material procurement, issues concerning quality and finally lack of market links. These concerns make ground realities different from what we set out with.
A complete report can be seen here.