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Gayatri Rao

Having done her B.F.A. from the College of Arts, Delhi and Masters in Design (M.Des.) in Visual Communication, from IDC, IIT-Powai, Bombay, where she was a pioneered animation as a medium by creating her first short film ‘Calls of Animals on alternative teaching methods. She has had the rare distinction of doing an internship at Walt Disney Studios, Florida sponsored by UNICEF where she grasped the spirit of classical animation which she passed on to her hungry for knowledge colleagues back in India. She also created as her project there, a minute long film on female infanticide which moved many of her distinguished mentors at Disney. She also pioneered stylised animation commercials in India and directed the animation for Mahakapi, a film based on the Jataka tale of the Monkey King, for CFSI, which won the prestigious UNESCO Award in 1997. A true designer whose clear and often critical insight and aesthetics informs all the studio’s projects, her vision for Raju & I helped it to transcend the general limitations of a public service message film to become the most critically acclaimed Indian animation film, winning her the National Award for Best Animation Director in 2005 by President A.P.J Kalam.This was only the beginning of a series of 3 short and 2 feature length animation films, the second of which “Swami Ayyappan” on which she supervised as Creative producer’ will be released this year. She continues to nurture and guide a new generation of artists and animators in Animagic as they continue the tradition of making quality animation films which are true to their Indian roots and heritage. She loves to create and started Rawworks a project which seeks to bridge the gap between the traditional and contemporary by creating utility products inspired by traditional and tribal art forms.

When did you first get interested in Art and Craft and why did you take up a career as an artist?

Oh somewhere in my childhood,when my Mom said ‘Wait not now!!’ to pulling all my dolls out of a trunk to play with, after one of my many surgical tooth extractions, which would drive both of us up the wall. Well, what I did next is made my own dolls with chocolate wrappers in a house for them with a shoe box..and it’s furniture with matchboxes.. When Mom returned to find me engrossed in myself created fairyland, she was moved to tears.. and thus began my journey with full support and encouragement from her. So much so that she would gladly let me have her sarees to cut and fabricate into dresses.. and let me drop out of Maths stats Honours to pursue a degree in Applied Arts @ The Delhi College of Arts.

“Write down a mission statement and a set of goals.. paste it on your wall.. and document, network and leave no stone unturned to get the space and freedom to create“.

Do you have any favorite subject / theme based on which make your creations?

Yes usually anything or any cause that needs revival and is facing neglect or extinction, does find a special place in my heart  So may it be the hand spun Khaan fabric of Maharashtra replaced by mills, a dying drawn art of Pattachitra scrolls of story-telling, a Heritage site that needs a fund raiser to preserve etc.

What are you currently working on?

Developing a range for men’s wear and a range of glass and metal jewellery. A women’s range of wraps and quilts, hopefully a range of merchandise for a play on ancient Indian games.

Generally what is the price range of your creations?

Usually quite affordable, I feel economical constraints in today’s challenging times need not stifle the buyer from taking home a piece of Art. Art needent be a privilege for the prosperous.

What inspired you to start working on Raw works?

It did start with nurturing a Pattachitra Artist from West Bengal who was struggling to keep his art of story-telling alive by singing along with his painted scrolls. With all the assorted media bombardments, no one would have the time for his art, sustaining a family would be next to impossible what with the further harsh realities of floods. I helped him out with providing paper paint and ideas of designing utility products for masses with his drawn art... and hoped it would spread in his entire village.This kind of venture needed a lot of social and economic hand holding.. for which I did not have the bandwidth at that time. The idea took shape and Rawworks was conceived. So today the awe inspiring wealth of Tribal and Folk Art of India, displaying honesty and simplicity in their evocative designs, have been replaced or made redundant by modern lifestyles. Production methods and means of entertainment making it difficult for the artisans and their Art to survive on their traditional skills. Rawworks is an attempt to bridge this gap of traditional and contemporary, by creating products inspired by these traditional drawn Art, which are the pearls of our rich Indian heritage.

 Did you take any formal training?

No not in working or cutting in fabric..have done masters in Visual Communication from IIT Bombay though. My label Raw Wear is self explanatory and my designs are wild and experimental.

Why “Rawwork India” as your brand name?

Yes, Rawworks is the bigger umbrella that shelters the other adventures like Rawwear. Chiefly, because the Raw and Rustic fascinated me. Those are the roots of every Indian Art Form.

Art and Craft are just considered as a hobby, since you have made a career in it, what are your views ?

“Immerse yourself in whatever is close to your heart .. and let the passion drive you to success“.

What would be your words of advice for that hobbyist who is struggling to establish themselves as successful entrepreneurs?

Write down a mission statement and a set of goals.. paste it on your wall.. and document, network and leave no stone unturned to get the space and freedom to create.

“Success will follow if you follow your heart!“.

Have you ever used any of the Pidilite products? If yes which one and why?

Yes ofcourse, I have used Fevicol, Fabric markers, Fevicryl Hobby Ideas No Stitch Fabric Glue, Hobby Ideas Glass Colours and Fevicryl Hobby Ideas Acrylic Colours.

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Posted 3 years ago

Nice sculpting