Promotion of Traditional Arts

The Adivasi Academy has always endeavoured to study, revitalise and promote traditional Adivasi arts. We began by forming artist collectives in the Chhotaudepur region that has a rich tradition of pithoro painting, wooden sculpture, pottery, canework and handwoven textile. The Academy documented as well as held workshops and exhibitions for bringing visibility to the artists. As the Vaacha Museum began to be developed, Bhasha/Adivasi Academy began to come into contact with artists from other Adivasi areas.

In February and March 2014, Bhasha collaborated with the Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi and invited 72 artists from Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand and Odisha, for interactive workshops at the Adivasi Academy. Encouraged by the response, Bhasha collaborated with the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, Vadodara and held 3 national workshops during 2017 and 2018, inviting Adivasi artists practising both, traditional as well as contemporary art to create institutional spaces for Adivasi artists to come together and to create ways forward for the survival and sustenance of Adivasi arts. We had artists from Gujarat, Jharkhand, Chattisgarh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Karnataka.

The Vaacha museum is enriched with their artworks that includes Rogan art (Kutch), bamboo craft (south Gujarat), Chitrakathi painting and leather puppetry (Maharashtra), terracotta (Rajasthan), Kurumba painting (Tamil Nadu), Sohrai, Godna and Paitkar paintings (Jharkhand), metal craft and carving (Chhatisgarh), Saora painting (Odisha), sculpture and painting (Shantiniketan), Sabai and Madur grass weaving, pattachitra, clay dolls (West Bengal), Ravanhattha (Rajasthan), Jute weaving, Gondi painting, wooden sculpture, relief work (Madhya Pradesh), Madhubani Painting (Bihar) and Hase Chittara Painting (Karnataka).

Post the final workshop, The Faculty of Fine Arts of The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda collaborated with Bhasha for the two-day Exhibition which received a huge response from Barodians. Teachers and students from the faculty, Navarachna school students, doctors, artists and the media thronged the two-day event and had discussions and demonstrations with the artists. The artists had wonderful sales and left Baroda with a request to be invited again!

The Adivasi Academy at Tejgadh is a space open to artists to come. Any art or craft organization or independent artist wishing to collaborate for revitalizing and promoting traditional and contemporary art practices of adivasi/folk artists is welcome to contact Bhasha!