It’s time for Delhi to get crafty again, as the Crafts Museum is back with the 19th edition of the Dastkar Mela. This year, the festival celebrates the camel and the wonder of nature. In keeping with the theme, the products on sale here have been inspired by the camel or made with the animal’s wool, milk and dung.
“This year, there are many new groups bringing forward new and real Indian art. Along with special camel products, the new arts and crafts include Ajrakh Prints, Bandhani amongst others,” says Laila Tyabji, chairperson Dastkar.
A Delhi-based NGO, Dastkar does its bit to promote the crafts sector of India, with artists from over 22 states. At the Mela each year, a cross spectrum of artists get the opportunity to exhibit their wares in the Capital.
The Mela this year is not only about buying products; there will also be a Dastkar crafts workshop, in which, visitors can participate and take home what they make. Some of these workshops will be on how to make products of beads, sanjhi crafts, basket-weaving, paper products, painting, terracotta pottery and even phad painting.
Besides the workshops, artisans will also conduct day-long demonstrations on how certain crafts are made. Artist Akhil Kumar from West Bengal will demonstrate mat weaving, while Jagat Ram Devangan from Chattisgarh will display how gourd decoratives are made. Also, Kiran from Kashmir will demonstrate the process of making Ari embroidery. The All India Artisans and Crafts Workers Welfare Associations will screen film documentaries on arts and artisans across India, and there will be theatre workshops and street plays on at the venue as well.
Foodies don’t need to worry about getting bored at the event, as regional food will get center stage, with a special focus on cuisine from Rajasthan and Hyderabad.
Folk artists from across the country will be performing at the venue
Pabuji ki phad — a phad painting performance from Rajasthan
Musical performance by Been players
Workshops by artists all day long