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HomeNoticiasHandmade Tales: Puja Rao | Verve Journal

Handmade Tales: Puja Rao | Verve Journal


Textual content by Shirin Mehta. Images by Anupama Sebastian and Afroz Ulla. Styling by Sarah Rajkotwala. Artwork path by Aishwaryashree

Puja Rao, 39
Ceramic Artist and Designer

What initially drew you to this artwork/craft type? Are you a full-time ceramicist or do you steadiness it with a “common” job?
After finishing NIFT [National Institute of Fashion Technology] Mumbai’s trend design programme in 2004, I labored in Hyderabad for a yr after which shifted to Bangalore and labored with Munch Design Workshop within the areas of analysis and developments and forecasting, and attire, graphic, product and packaging design. Alongside the way in which, whereas planning my dwelling backyard I found an enormous hole available in the market for backyard services. Following a brief entrepreneurial programme at IIM Bangalore in 2010, I launched my model Songs of Summer time providing panorama designing and arrange a retailer for backyard merchandise in quite a lot of supplies, ceramics being certainly one of them. Initially, I took an introductory workshop in ceramics, extra as a approach of getting some understanding of the medium, however my curiosity grew and I used to be hooked. In 2012, I arrange my very own studio.

What’s your technique of creation? How does the artistic impulse manifest for you?
I work with a clay physique known as stoneware utilizing each hand-building and wheel-throwing strategies. I’m consistently experimenting with strategies individually and together, floor textures, mixing supplies, carvings and glazes and glaze functions. Presently, I’m working with oxidation firing in an electrical kiln.

Most of my items are my explorations of moments – private experiences of issues, nature, occasions and moods that I attempt to seize. The fantastic thing about working with ceramics…is time! The items change as you modify and vice versa. It’s storytelling by way of type, traces, depth, textures, color, tone, depth, layers and myriad combos.

What conjures up your shapes and silhouettes?
Inspiration is a state of being. You simply have to permit the artistic drive to stream by way of uninterruptedly. 

Do you sketch your concepts earlier than you begin or float?
When there’s a flood of concepts, I attempt to pen these down as rapidly as I can, and people sketches act as a revisiting set off. Very hardly ever concrete, they’re a mixture of type, motion, texture, color, element, feeling or thought.

The artistic set off is available in all kinds; generally it’s a gesture, generally it’s the leftover of a gesture and generally it’s simply the absence of issues.

Did you all the time have a want to create, at the same time as a toddler?
Way back to I can bear in mind, the artistic urge was all the time there. My dad and mom recognised it and all the time inspired me. From copying the caricatures of Rajiv Gandhi and VP Singh within the Sunday newspapers, which I used to be enamoured with, to utilizing pencil sharpening blades to carve on blackboard chalk in school; from falling in love with artistic folks in my youth [out of admiration] to hanging round within the pottery studio in certainly one of my colleges; from bartering artwork provides to discovering forests to sit down in; landscaping and, now, ceramics. It has all the time been about artwork or creation in some type or the opposite.

What position do artwork and design on the whole play in your life?
Each single factor we have now skilled since beginning shapes us. Artwork is a software to expertise and talk creation in numerous kinds. I encompass myself with nature, books, music and myriad conversations, and I additionally spend plenty of time in solitude. However I do decide and select generally. As an illustration, a small tumbler I picked up…I like the fat-bellied type. It’s so intelligent and misleading; it’s tiny however holds extra water than you anticipate. I like consuming from it…small joys!

What would you usually put on whenever you work?
I’ve a distinct set of clothes that I alter into at work. Places me within the temper. Something that doesn’t prohibit my actions and is conducive to the climate. 

Is there any type of conventional Indian ceramic creation that you just love? That you just achieve inspiration from?
Indian crafts, temple structure, music, dance, clothes, philosophy, yogic practices have all influenced me in varied methods at completely different instances of my life. I bear in mind how throughout a highway journey with a pitstop at Madurai, I used to be gripped by these small bronze sculptures of Nataraja and the goddesses within the Meenakshi Temple. The extent of detailing, the ageing, the tone, the fluidity of the kinds and proportions, together with the silence in that area, the sunshine at the moment, the coldness of the ground, the scent, and the sensation led to by the merging of all of it, was so shifting. Delicate and robust, small and highly effective, gentle and heavy, pungent and extra – all on the identical time. Generally, when that feeling revives, I attempt to relive it by capturing some facet in a bit.

Has there been a defining artistic second in your life that informs all others?
A interval that started on the finish of 2015 has performed a pivotal position in altering my method. The 5 years thereon have been transformative. My relationship with the world inside and outdoors modified. My relationship with clay modified. It turned a medium for expressing and exploring my inside workings, and it enabled me to precise and rework my feelings. It was a path of self-discovery that made me unearth the fossils on which I stood. And that journey, it gave me phrases I couldn’t discover, it gave me a vocabulary I didn’t have, it was the reward of an trustworthy companion.

Kabir’s doha [couplet] got here to thoughts throughout these days: 

Maati kahe kumhaar se tu kya rondhe mohe,
Ek din eisa aiyega, mein rondhuga tohe
[The clay says to the potter why are you kneading me
The day will come when I will be kneading you]

Do the items all the time prove the way in which you imagined or are there variables which might be unattainable to regulate? Is that this thrilling or upsetting?
All the pieces is within the technique of changing into one thing; nothing is ever static, neither the viewer nor the piece of artwork. That is true of the method of creation of a bit of artwork or creation as an entire – it’s the identical factor.

So far as execution…the one disappointments have been when issues went technically incorrect or I found that I didn’t have sufficient information. These emotions are additionally fleeting since these failures solely catapulted studying and newer concepts. The wonder lies in the truth that you don’t management all of it.

Earlier: Latika Nehra
Subsequent: Rajvi Mehta




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