Sustainability NOW - Crafting Futures

Culture and Heritage
Creativity, Sustainability
Panel Discussion
Wednesday, 10th August 2022
From 6:00pm to 7:30pm (IST)


Niyogi Books and Avid Learning present a riveting online panel discussion on the sustainable handicrafts heritage of India with leading crafts practitioners, art researchers and authors.
Nature has been one of the biggest influences on India’s inherently sustainable crafts heritage. To celebrate the newly launched book 'The Shoemaker’s Stitch: Mochi Embroideries of Gujarat in the TAPI Collection’, this discussion will examine the sustainable practices in the Indian crafts sector, explore the potential of indigenous handicrafts to support local artisans and contribute to the Indian cultural economy, as well as, illustrate some of the best practices and the future of these eco-friendly art forms in the country.

Tune in to explore the symbiosis of India’s craft heritage, its indigenous artisans and the environment!


Rosemary Crill

Rosemary Crill

Museum Curator and co-author, The Shoemaker’s Stitch. Mochi Embroideries of Gujarat in the TAPI Collection

Rosemary Crill was formerly Senior Curator for South Asia at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, where she was a curator for 36 years. Specialising in Indian textiles and painting, she has published and lectured extensively in both areas. Her books include Indian Embroidery, Marwar Painting, Indian Ikat Textiles, Chintz: Indian Textiles for the West and The Fabric of India, which accompanied a major exhibition at the V&A in 2015-16. Her latest book, co-authored with Shilpa Shah, is The Shoemaker’s Stitch. Mochi Embroideries of Gujarat in the TAPI Collection (2022).

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Niraj Dave - Designer and Founder , Dehaati

Niraj Dave

Designer and Founder , Dehaati

Niraj Dave did his fine arts at Hudson Valley Community College, Troy, New York and later continued with his graduation in Fired materials from the Indian Institute Of Crafts and Design, Jaipur. He far back found his deeper acquaintance with the material clay since he was a child. He began to learn and do pottery then. Coming back from the U.S and pursuing a specialization in Ceramic and crafts, while he was equally exposed to industrial setups, and a variety of different clays and materials, he instantly began to admire Terracotta as the most beautiful material of all and rural pottery as a regardless dignified skill. It was then he began to follow his heart and continued to explore with traditional potters in Rajasthan, Orissa and finally landed up in Kachchh. Niraj since then has been dedicated to working with the local potters of Kutch and continues to strive for a better place and market for their work. Since resolving and deeply dealing with the issues of traditional firing techniques, material limitations and community paradigms, he has now become a family to the Kumbhars in Kachchh.

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Dadi Pudumjee - Founder The Ishara Puppet Theatre Trust

Dadi Pudumjee

Founder The Ishara Puppet Theatre Trust

Dadi Pudumjee is the managing trustee and artistic director of The Ishara Puppet Theatre Trust – one of India’s major puppet theatre trusts, working with modern, traditional puppet companies and individuals. He served as the president of UNIMA (Union Internationale de la marionette) which is a world puppet organization (2008-21). He began with puppetry as a hobby in Pune and made it a profession in 1976. He studied visual communication from the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad (1971-75) specializing in short filmmaking. He trained in Puppet theatre from Darpana Academy of Performing Arts Ahmedabad (1980-86), Marionette Theatre Institute Stockholm Sweden (1976-78), Pedagogue in creative drama and puppetry from Var Theatre Medborgarhuset Stockholm Sweden, and workshop training in Bunraku puppetry/manipulation at Marionette Theatre Institute Stockholm. Dadi has been awarded the Padma Shri national award, by the President of India in March 2011; Sangeet Natak Academy - National award for work in puppetry in 1993; Sanskriti Pratishthan award for puppetry, Delhi; Delhi Natya Sangh award in Puppetry; and Delhi Parsee Anjuman cultural award.

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Archana Shah - Author and Founder, Bandhej

Archana Shah

Author and Founder, Bandhej

Archana Shah has been collaborating with artisans around the country for the last 40 years to create textiles for her clothing company BANDHEJ, a label influenced by traditional textiles and artisanal skills, offering a range of eco-friendly, handcrafted sustainable fashion with an eastern sensibility. Over the years, through many initiatives and interactions, she has been able to revive and rejuvenate several craft skills, thereby encouraging young artisans to realise that they can earn a decent livelihood by pursuing their traditional vocation. In 2013, she published her first book, Shifting Sands, Kutch: A Land in Transition which recounts her personal journey over three decades with the land of Kutch, its people and their crafts and has recently published - Crafting a Future: Stories of Indian Textiles and Sustainable Practices, on the value of handcrafted textiles in present times.

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Sunita Nair - Author and Editor

Sunita Nair

Author and Editor

Sunita Nair is the author of the coffee-table book 'Indigenius Artists - India', published by her in August 2018. This 328-page book features artworks by leading indigenous artists from eleven art genres of India that have received critical acclaim from scholars and collectors internationally. The stunning photography of the artworks as well as artists at work in their villages are presented in a contemporary design format. The production quality of the book is of the highest international standard. She was previously editing The Taj Magazine, a four-monthly magazine on India published by The Indian Hotels Company Limited. The Taj Magazine had a closed circulation among the high networth clientele worldwide of The Indian Hotels Company Limited. The range of articles covered by the magazine varied from travel, culture and heritage, to political and social trends in the country, economic growth and contemporary urban life in India. Sunita edits books for clients and writes content for newsletters and social media posts for business clients. She has a Master’s Degree in English Literature from University of Mumbai and a Bachelor’s Degree in English Literature from Sophia College, University of Mumbai. She completed her ICSE at Queen Mary School, Mumbai.

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Niyogi Books

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