Sunday, January 31, 2010

Day#4 at Mankave Studio :Krishna & Gopis

Work on the new canvas continued today as well with Aathira and Panini getting down to the task of giving yellow ochre wash to the surface.They are just back from an hour long Karnatic music class at Tali,Calicut.

They are the students of Karnatic Vocalist  Tamarakkad Krishnan Nambootiri.
Today they sang two of Tyagarajas Pancharatnakritis :Jagadaananda... and the music class
Sasi Edavarad and Dr Reghuraj walk in a little after 10am.

Rahul TR ( left bottom corner) quit attending the art class and has now joined this group.He has   wonderful control on line and he is a quick learner.
Panini is mixing some red as Dr Reghuraj takes on yellow ochre wash.
Aathira's lil sister Aswathi drops in at 11 am to pull her out for the Sunday noon Abacus class. Anila is just waiting for aathira to finish. At the other end the red outline is being given over the pencil drawing

As the session continues, Dinakumari teacher joins the group. She is an arts and crafts teacher in a Govt school. She is joining the class after a long break owing pressures at work and home.She prefers to watch the proceedings for the day.

Rahul is nearing the finish line with his Hanuman.

The boys then disappear for a quick football game.

And its for Anila and Dr Reghu to persist and finish the colour mix in their palletes .They hate wasting paints.Its past 1 pm in the afternoon.Its time for Lunch. The BhagavatGeetha -Sanskrit class will begin in the same venue at 2 pm every sunday.

Kathakali Appreciation:a lec dem by Late Kesavan Asan in 2007

We give bring to you a few pics from our archives that feature the Lecture-Demonstration on Kathakali by Late Kesavan Asan:
Late Kesavan Asan who wrote the attakatha at the behest of Sangeethasabha based on Tyagaraja's Opera 'Nauka charitam', is seen here giving a lecture demo assisted by Kala.Pradeep.

 Kathakali brings together various traditional art forms like dance,painting ,music and the connoisseur gets a chance to appreciate features like  : the encryption of emotions , the decryption of textual nuances, colour, pure rhythm , you name it, kathakali has got it. our murals now attempt to freeze all that into one frame for posterity.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Mural Heritage of Calicut

The Padinhare Kovilakam Palace Complex of Mankave is home to some rare murals. While the complex itself is some 250 years old, the few surviving murals clearly belong to the mature phase in the evolution of Medieval Kerala mural tradition that began in 8th CAD and flourished till late 19 th CAD.
Featured below is‘Dakshinamurthi’ mural from the first floor of Vaikena Maaliga (The Study Hall) . 
Dakshinamurthi is a form of Siva facing south (Dakshina) and is depicted as teacher of Yoga, gnosis, music and giving exposition to the sciences .

(A Kinnera with a lute and lion-tailed monkeys and birds of paradise in an arboreal concert. The sweet music from the Kinnera’s lute and the appreciating sounds of the monkeys and the birds wafts softly as Siva holds forth to the sages around him.)

While the bottom half of this 80 sq foot exquisite mural has fallen prey to vagaries of time and defacement obscuring the features of main characters, the top portion comprising of the canopy of the tree under which Siva is seated and all its arboreal residents is still well preserved. The clarity and detail in depicting the mythical figures neatly
camouflaged amidst the foliage, is truly astounding. The well preserved and vibrant natural colours and pigments indicate that materials like powdered pearls and lapis lazuli, among others were used. The immaculate clarity and detail in capturing the nature’s bounty is unparalleled in mural history of Kerala..

Some historians attribute the decline of patronage to mural painting in Kerala to the Mysore Invasions (1766-1782), the ascent of the British and importantly, the emergence of Raja Ravi Varma as the leading exponent of Western mode of painting. But the recent trend of plastering wall spaces in temples with brass and copper plates, by rich and mindless devotees, erasing old murals is a great cause for alarm.
The ‘Dakshinamurthi’ mural of Mankave deserves to be restored and preserved. and its unique style and tradition of depicting nature ,flora and fauna, needs to be studied and documented.
-Sasi Edavarad, Mural artist , Calicut.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Mankave Idyll

Happy Republic Day .No school today.Panini and Rahul decide to work for a while on the new canvas with yellow ochre.They have Naveen for company, streaming music from a sony walkman, and centrefresh to chew on.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Progress on new canvas

Work on the new canvas continued today as well with Anila,Aathira and Rahul spending some time giving yellow ochre wash to the surface.Two and a half years after starting the Sunday Mural Classes, the Mankave Studio now has about twentytwo students on its rolls and they will take turns o complete works in the true spirit of traditional painting where individual artist stays anonymous and shares the painting surface with his her peers. This has been a good week. Three youngchildren sought to join the class.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Involving children and their families in Kathakali

Sangeethasabha has successfully tried to involve the children  from the neighbourhood and their families in the Kathakali performances.

The attakatha 'Santhanagopalam'  was first staged in Mankave in 2006 (see pic to the right).
Two of the children who took part later finished their basic course and performed purappadu in Dec 2009.Santhanagopalam was staged again in 2009 at Mankave.All the nine children and their families stayed up
till 2.30am , and enjoyed the performance.

Monday, January 18, 2010

A day at the Sunday Mural Class

Mural Class in progress.In the background is the 6 feet  x 4 feet mural depicting the story of Manavedan, a Sanskrit scholar and poet. It was dedicated/unveiled (Netronmeelanam-ceremony) on 1st Dec 2009 at the Manavedan Auditorium,Thrissala Bhagavathi Temple,Mankave.
Please visit the following link for pics: