Kathakraang is a poetic fusion of dance and book-making, where parallels are drawn as one experiences this work of art. The fluidity and graceful movements of Kathak as a dance form is captured through the handcrafted manifestation of the book itself. This limited-edition publication illustrates the hasta-mudras of dance and reflects on their numerous meanings.
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This unique product is the beauty of the collaboration between two creative souls; kathak dancer Mrunal and book-artist Aditi. Their journey together explores the intersection of their practices and a shared passion for Asian traditions and culture.
It is a handcrafted, limited-edition product designed to be playfully dynamic and tactile. Essentially circular, the book can be unfolded and placed on a flat surface to assume the form of a sphere. Upcycled paper produced from fine waste cotton is used, embellishing each page with a unique natural texture. The deliberately retained frayed edges are from the organic process of lifting handmade paper off the deckle frame. Experiments with different hand-binding techniques led to the book being glued at the spine for strength and longevity. The hand-dyed red cotton fabric, which adorns the spine and the box, evokes an emotion of love and symbolises a sacred beginning in Indian culture reminds one of the Alta. The Alta adorns the palms and feet of a Kathak dancer, adding graceful prominence to their form.
Kathakraang illuminates the subtle hand movements or hasta-mudras of Kathak through its intricate line drawings. These are carefully transferred, to handmade paper with an ancient printmaking technique. Each graphic is exposed to a silkscreen stretched across a wooden frame. In this stencilling method, ink is pressed through the screen using a squeegee to 'pull' the design imprint on the surface. For this set of artisan-made books, 6000 pages were screen-printed over 70 days, overcoming the practical challenges of faster ink absorption by both handmade paper and the screen.
An art-form in its own right, this rigorous process involves total engagement of the mind and body, creating an internal rhythm. The distressed edges of the paper are dipped in the same red ink for visual depth and vibrance. The handcrafted box complements the story of the making of this artist-book. It was designed and sized to contain it in a crescent format.
The hope is for each copy of Kathakraang to find a space to be appreciated as an art object. It must be cherished for its dialogue with dance and celebrated for its semblance with life.
"Social Impact and change are at the core of Sakal values. We believe that role of media today has changed from advocating social issues to facilitating the change itself," said, Mrunal Pawar, Director, Sakal Media Group.
To pre-order this book and extend support to Indian artisans and handmade artist books, kindly visit www.mrunalpawar.com.
Payments will be accepted in the name of Sakal Social Foundation, with 80G/FCRA certificates provided for tax exemption.
About Mrunal Pawar:
Every person has the opportunity to achieve his/her fullest potential and participate in and contribute to all aspects of life. She believes in educating people, empowering them, and enabling them to make conscious choices, creating a humane society in which all people have pathways to health and opportunity. She is willing to transform communities with culture by inspiring people to open their minds, accept and include people with intellectual disabilities, and thereby anyone who is perceived as different providing them courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place.
Mrunal Pawar is a Pune-based artist, Kathak dancer, Dance Movement Therapist, and avid yoga practitioner/ teacher. She is on a journey of self-exploration, discovering innovative ways to give back and expand her tribe of people who create deep, valuable impact. Her distinctive personal style emanates joy and peace and expresses the vibrant spirit and atmosphere of the ancient Indian culture. From a young age, she has believed, "You can create anything once you see it in your mind."
Being the founder of Kathak Rang, she sees dance as unmanifest of all the five elements of the universe and beyond. She believes that "dance is the energy, ecstasy, beyond seasons and time, and yet all seasons and time. It is the spiritual journey that unfolds the mystery of who we are. As we live and breathe this journey, the dancer truly becomes the dance."
She is also the Director at the Sakal Media Group, a Trustee of Pune Blind School and Nirdhar Trust. With her contributions to these strong foundations of service and ethical journalism, she is deeply committed to making this world a better place by pushing boundaries, giving opportunities to others, following her convictions, helping others make better choices, and to tell powerful stories that will help reshape the world we live in.
About Aditi Babel:
|Author||Mrunal Pawar,Aditi Babel|