Come on a craft tour to Kerala
Colouricious Holidays offer you the opportunity to travel the Kerala region of India and delve into the wonderful craft culture that has been thriving there for centuries. On this craft tour you will visit crafting centres participating in a a range of creative workshops all organised for your enjoyment. You won’t have to worry about a thing! Here are a few of the crafts you can expect to experience, ready to takeaway new skills for your own creative home projects.
TASARA Centre for Creative Weaving
The TASARA Centre is located in the Beypore village of Kerala,along India’s west coast. ‘Tasara’ means ‘weaver’s shuttle’ in Sanskrit. The centre works to bring together both contemporary and traditional weavers and other textile artists to encourage both a respect for traditional forms and real innovation. The TASRA centre’s Artist in Residence programme has given studio space and facilities to support to artists and artisans throughout India for more than 25 years. And has jump-started the careers of many successful textile artists and painters.
TASRA also provides extensive training opportunities in weaving and both traditional and batik dyeing, using natural dyes and pigments as well as modern chemical colours. Its annual textile workshops have become a gathering place for weavers and textile artists throughout India to meet, network and collaborate.
Kolenchery is a small town in Kerala State, specifically a few kilometres east of Cocin in Ernakulam district, near India’s west coast. One of its most important features, as far as Colouricious Holidays is concerned, is the Pottery Making Unit which focuses on the traditional terra cotta pottery techniques of Kerala State. Not only is this an opportunity to see the works of some of India’s premier workers in terra cotta pottery, it is a chance to gain insight into the way this traditional crafting material (and a mixture of traditional and modern techniques) can be used to create art that is both thoroughly modern yet truly timeless.
Throughout Kerala, toddy tapping is conducted in the same way it has been for hundreds if not thousands of years. The ‘palm toddy’ or simply ‘toddy’, is harvested from coconut palms without cutting down the coconuts – if they are instead carefully ‘tapped’, the milk inside will refill over time. In this way, a single tree can produce hundreds of litres of coconut milk each day. You’ll learn how this is accomplished, and also how to make a delicious palm toddy – even with purchased coconuts at home.
Kalaripayattu is one of India’s oldest martial arts, and one of the oldest continuously practiced martial arts in the world. ‘Kalari’ means battle or battlefield, and ‘Kalaripayattu’ means ‘Practice in the Arts of the Battlefield’. Its written history is more than 2300 years old, but it is believed that many of the practices go back much further. It involves the use of what we would call mideval weapons, especially shields, spears, bows, swords and the more obscure silambam.