Submission to the Australia in the Asian Century paper

Increased engagement in the Asia Pacific region is largely dependent on growing trust between cultures. It is important that both parties have confidence that each others aims complement their own long term interests. One obstacle to this trust is a crude development paradigm which presumes that the only course for progress in Asia is to … Continue reading Submission to the Australia in the Asian Century paper

Learning to weave in Bangalore

Alison Hussey reports on her hands on experience learning from traditional weavers, and how it is giving way to the IT industry For many of us with an interest in hand-crafted textiles, we learn about the art and skill of weaving and embellishment by buying textiles that look interesting to us. If we’re lucky, we … Continue reading Learning to weave in Bangalore

Kondapalli craft: You can’t have money without meaning

In order to understand a craft, it is important to not only understand it from the technical-economic point of view but also to understand the spirit behind it – the meaning the craft holds for the craft community. There are crafts which slowly languish and die not only because the craft products do not bring … Continue reading Kondapalli craft: You can’t have money without meaning

Rashidji: The Block Maker

  Rashidji shares the stories of his past when a gesture or word of appreciation was being valued more than money, when the ideas springing out from dialogues mattered more than the amount of ‘production output’. He speaks with much consideration about his learning at Anokhi, his greatest inspiration and assures that there will always … Continue reading Rashidji: The Block Maker

Appropriation or Exchange?

Christian Thompson argues that use of Aboriginal design by high-end fashion studios like Rodarte demonstrates a respect for culture that continues to honour the human form. Aboriginal art practices are part of a global economy and the recent collaboration between fashion designers Rodarte and the late Papunya Tula artist Benny Tjangala is testament to the … Continue reading Appropriation or Exchange?

When an Indian designer comes to Australia…

The recent ‘Through Indian Eyes’ hypothetical forum at the Powerhouse Museum reveal some surprising common ground between traditional craft in India and modern life in Australia. An Indian comes to Australia to revive a craft skill that had been outmoded by technological change… Wait a minute, shouldn’t it be the other way around? The ‘Through … Continue reading When an Indian designer comes to Australia…

Fashion design with a conscience

Western designers working with traditional artisans in India creating products for a consumer market with an ethical consciousness. How can the designers contribute to the artisan communities in a sustainable way? Bhukhu is an appliqué embroiderer from the small village of Marharbat, near Barmer in Rajasthan, India. She is sixty-four years old. Bhukhu learnt the … Continue reading Fashion design with a conscience

Australia India Design Residency–Reflections by Trent Jansen

I arrived in Delhi late at night and having never spent time in India previously I was of course amazed by the apparent chaos of the place. For a very ordered and organised person, the sights, sounds and machine guns that greeted me at the airport were all a concern. I took a Taxi to … Continue reading Australia India Design Residency–Reflections by Trent Jansen

The making of Sangam

A few months ago, I found out about the Australia India Design Platform. This platform is meant to act as a catalyst for creative partnership between the two countries. I was contacted to give a name and identity to this three year program on craft and design. After much thought and consultation, we settled on … Continue reading The making of Sangam

Travelling Responsibly through India

Culture – General Be prepared to be surprised. India is a country of diverse landscapes, languages, customs, religions and cultures and it is home to more than a billion people. What is considered acceptable behaviour in some parts may not be in others. This contrast is probably best observed when you compare the cities to … Continue reading Travelling Responsibly through India