A workshop “Do and Learn” began at the Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya (IGRMS), Southern Regional Centre (SRC), on Wellington House on Irwin Road in city yesterday where the famous Gond art is being taught by artists from Madhya Pradesh.
This is for the first time that such a workshop is being organised by Gond artists and the workshop will be on till Mar. 27.
The workshop is being conducted by tribal artists Nakul Pasham and his wife Premavathi Pashum. According to Vijay Mohan, Officer In-charge, IGRMS SRC, this is the 60th event being held under “Do and Learn” educational series.
The Gonds are among the largest tribes in Central India, numbering about 40 lakh. Though predominantly centred in Madhya Pradesh, they are present in significant numbers in Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh and Odisha.
The word “Gond” comes from the Dravidian expression kond, meaning ‘the green mountain.’ The recorded history of the Gond people goes back 1,400 years, but considering that they inhabit areas where rock paintings dating to the Mesolithic age have been found, their antecedents probably date back even earlier.
Many of the Gonds customs echo Mesolithic forbearers. An obvious example of this is the custom of decorating the walls of their houses, an activity that may originate in cave-dwelling traditions of their ancestors. The Gonds paint their walls with vibrant depictions of local flora, fauna and Gods and Goddess Kali.
According to the Gond belief system, each and everything whether it is a hill, river, rock or a tree is inhabited by a spirit and, consequently, is sacred. So the Gond people paint them as a form of respect and reverence. Gond paintings are a reflection of man’s close connection with his natural surroundings.
The artists use natural colours derived from charcoal, coloured soil, plant sap, leaves, and cow dung. This mystical art form is created by putting together dots and lines. The imaginative use of the line imparts a sense of movement to the still images. The paintings are an offering in worship of nature, and are also a mode of seeking protection and warding off evil.
Natl. Artists Workshop from tomorrow
Also, a National Artists Workshop has been organised at the IGRMS, SRC, premises from Mar. 20 to 29. The workshop will be inaugurated by Prof. P.K. Misra, President, Anthropological Association, Mysuru, tomorrow at 11.30 am.
A tribal workshop will be open for public on all days from between 10 am and 5.30 pm. Artists from Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh will take part in this workshop.
Around 14 tribal artisans are participating and art forms like, Gond painting, Saora painting, Godna painting, Taoda embroidery, Karnataka basketry will be present in the demonstrative workshop.