For this CL day, we learned about Cheriyal masks. These masks came from a village named Cheriyal. Much like Madubhani paintings came from mMadubhani.
First things first, we learnt a bit about the masks. We learnt where the different colours used for painting the masks were made from. For example, the blue was made from an indigo plant and was made lighter.
First we were told to make a mask out of clay. A lot of us found it challenging at the start, but as we kept going, it got easier. We then put those aside to dry. They will be ready in a couple of days.
After the break we were told to paint an already - made mask. First the instructor showed us a demo of coloring the female mask, and then we were given masks to paint. There were many vivid colours to choose from. For females the yellow is used for jewellery. There were many designs that he showed us and asked us to do. There were a lot of masks displayed for use to get inspired from.
CL day 5 was about Indian Heritage, and our group of 18 went to ‘Clay Station’ to learn pottery.
At first it was hard for the people who created ‘Clay Station’ to set up the beautiful and welcoming area, but that was not the only challenge they faced. It was also hard for them to get people to come and experience the joy of pottery because people take pottery as, ‘just another form of art which is very easy’ although it is not as easy as it looks, and the people who make it have studied, and have gotten a lot of practice. When a sculpture piece is being made, it goes through an entire process to create the final piece.
We learnt two important words, the first one Terracotta ( what we used to make our project ) it means baked earth, and literally that is what we did. Also you could notice that the terra-cotta turns red after it is baked, and we learnt that this happens because the iron from the clay goes away when baked. The iron comes in the clay in the first place from dead animals and plants.
The other word that we learnt is vitreous, which means something that does not absorb water. Traditionally people would use a bullock cart wheel and spin it using a stick, but now there is electrical power, etc. You can also use your hands for pottery, and there are 3 basic methods which are, pinching, coiling and slab. To make our project we used pinching and slab.
Finally when we got our hands messy and had fun talking and playing around with each other, we finished our work and made a slab that is curved, with block print designs on it the slabs were holding diya’s that were made by the method of pinching.
To conclude we all had a great time, there were some bumps, as in mistakes, here and there, but we were able to learn from the mistakes and finally we all succeeded!
Warli art originated in Maharashtra. It was started by one of the oldest tribes in India called the Warli tribe. The word Warli comes from the word Waru, it means ant hill in Gujarati. Bamboo sticks were chewed to make brushes to paint with. They used red, blue and yellow soil to make paintings.
During our trip to Savita, we learned many different figures that were used in Warli art like animals, people and nature. We met an artist named Kusum who had been doing Warli art for more than 20 years. Now, her son continues the tradition of being an artisan.
Also, we even made our own Warli Art paintings. The first thing we had to do was spread a reddish brown paste on a piece of cloth and then let it dry. Then, we took sticks and paintbrushes and used white paint to create scenes on the piece of cloth. The scenes were filled with people and animals such as birds, dogs and deer.
I think that perseverance, patience and a growth mindset are important to have when doing art, music or dance. This is because you need to keep trying if you make a mistake in any of the art forms because if you give up then you might never know if you could have been good at it.
Patience is also important because it helps you become a better artist and keep trying at something even though it may not be good at first. Lastly, I think that a growth mindset is key in art, music or dance because it helps you become better at what you do and also can achieve great accomplishments.
While I was doing my art work, I was patient because whenever I made a mistake I tried again and didn’t get frustrated easily. I was perseverant because whenever I got some constructive criticism, I tried to take it and make my artwork better. Finally, I showed that I had a growth mindset because I kept trying with my artwork and didn’t give up. I tried to improve my work and tried my best by adding and changing certain things about it.
Overall, the experience of doing Warli art and learning different figures was a very unique and fun experience that I would definitely like to do again.
On February 25, 2018 a group of 6th, 7th, and 8th graders went to EARTHA academy to learn about Kathak dance. This day was full of fun and entertainment. To be honest, I didn’t think much of Kathak at first. I had signed up for Bhangra and was disappointed to see that I hadn’t been able to do it. I realized that there was no point whining about not getting in it so I set all my unhappiness aside and started with a new energy.
When we walked inside, we started with a prayer led by Ms. Rupa, our teacher for the day. We then played a game to introduce ourselves. We had to say our name and add a movement. Everyone was laughing because the movements that we were doing were funny. We then started learning basic footwork and spins. After that is when we actually started learning the dance. The dance and song was really pretty. We got our positions and continuously kept practicing the dance. At the end of the day we had learnt a full 4 minute dance in one day.
I enjoyed the day very much! In conclusion I would say that the trip was a great experience which taught us many new things. I am so excited to perform our dance piece on stage! I would love to go to EARTHA again.
Today I stayed at CIS and did bollywood dancing. It was amazing. Our dance instructor came to teach us some choreography to the Hindi song “Aankh Mare”. The dance style was very interesting as there was a lot of intricate body movements. Though it was different to many of us, we found the experience very fun.
So, to start off the day, we did a simple warm up to get stretched. Then, we listened to the song a couple of times to get the feel of the music. We then went over the choreography bit by bit. After we figured out the steps, we organised the group formation for the flash mob. Later in the day, we went to shoot the flash mob at the elementary basketball court. It took us many tries, but we were able to showcase an awesome flash mob.
So, after this long journey through Bollywood dancing, we learnt a lot. I especially learnt that it may seem difficult in the beginning, but if you keep on trying you will get it. Anyways, this CL day was a blast, and it was one I will never forget!
Today for our 5th CL day, we went to Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts. We learnt a sequence from Kalaripayattu. Kalari is a South Indian martial art that originated in Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Kalaripayattu is inspired from the fighting techniques of wild animals like a lion, tiger, elephant, etc.
When we arrived at Attakkalari Centre for Movement Arts, we first did a few warmup poses to stretch our muscles. Even the warmup was tiring for all of us, but we didn’t complain and persevered. One of the warmups was to kick our legs as high as possible, while walking across the room. Even Ms. Stella and Ms. Beena tried to follow our warmups!
Eventually we started learning the kalari sequence that we would then preform in a weeks time. Learning the sequence was challenging. The teacher would say things like; bend down more, have a straight back, hold the position for 10 seconds. This left us all in agony! Just when we all thought the sequence was over, the teacher would incorporate new moves in addition to our old ones. It left some of us very confused, thinking; What side do I turn? What hand should I move? How many times do I do this? Should my leg be bent? Some of us were looking at one another returning the same ‘puzzled’ look on our faces or even eyebrow raise which translates to what is going on?!
We practiced the whole sequence a couple of times but still not enough times for some of us to feel fully confident in the moves. By tomorrow some of our muscles will be aching from doing poses that we have never tried before. Luckily, we have extra time in clubs to practice and correct our mistakes. Hopefully when we perform what we have been taught on stage, in front of people, we will do a good job as well as interest others to research and learn kalari as it isn’t a well known art because of urbanisation.
Overall, We all enjoyed learning something new. It was challenging but fun. Perseverance is key when doing kalari because it pushes you to your limits. Hopefully when we preform on stage we do well and motivate others to try something new, even if it isn’t kalari.
Greetings fellow peers and teachers who may be reading this message. For this CL Day, I have decided to learn more about the traditional music of this nation. For most of my life, I was identified as an NRI (Non-Residential Indian), meaning that I won’t have a great knowledge of traditional Indian arts, especially music. I was also curious about the types of Indian instruments, and how this genre of music differs from western culture.
To start the day off, we watched a group of musicians from Bangalore Art Centre perform a composition known as Raag Bihar on Indian instruments. This was the first time I was ever so close to the instruments and the song was a good introduction and briefing on what we would be accomplishing today. Eventually, after learning the purpose and language of those types of instruments, we each split into 4 groups to try each activity for ourselves. The activities included vocals, tabla, sitar, and harmonium. I’m pretty sure everyone enjoyed playing around with the instruments for fun.
When the time came for us to select our individual instrument of choice, we would then learn how to play Raag Bihar as a group. Initially, each instrument would ‘master’ their part separately. I was participating in the vocals section, which was quite new to me. Indian classical music has its own specialized ring to it as it composes of singing musical notes, speaking the language of the tabla etc.
Once we were familiar with our roles, we regrouped and practiced the piece all together as one. It was at this moment when I realized that though, an instrument by itself already sounds charming, the entire band makes the music even above exquisite. I learned to appreciate the dexterity and thought that has been put in by Indian musicians all throughout. The fact that we performed live at the Odeum only made things better. We were able to demonstrate our newly learned skill to an open audience, which allowed us to feel more confident about the topic after the show.
I think the reason why we did these above activities is to give us a deeper meaning to Indian culture. It gives us a better sense of life throughout history, as well as makes us think more critically on how and why culture has changed - for the better or the worse.
A day was spent at the Eartha Academy unravelling the experience of true dancing whilst enjoying the rich Indian heritage in “Kathak” dance. Roopa Ravindran who is the founder of Eartha, gives an excellent opportunity to dance lovers to have Kathak as a good source of exercise and creativity, strengthening the sense of positivity, harmony and confidence.
The group of 7th graders who joined the Kathak session at the academy were all excited as to what was in store for them. Ms.Roopa Ravindran, started off our session with breathing and concentration exercises for a warmup. She explained Kathak, which comes from Sanskrit, where Katha means story and the person narrating the story is called a “Kathakar”.
Ms.Roopa taught us the basics of Kathak like:
Now was the most interesting part of the session, where we had a chance to choreograph a dance by the fusion of different forms of dance, including Kathak. Ms.Roopa taught us a short Kathak dance and from there on, the girls and boys were divided into separate groups, where the girls and boys choreographed a piece of dance each. The girls choreographed a dance on the HollyWood track “River”, whereas the boys showcased their dance from the Bollywood track “Bom Diggy Diggy” adding Kathak steps into it turning it into a fusion dance.
The thrill of learning a new form of dance, had all of us on our feet. The end result was amazing where each one of us developed our knowledge about a new dance form which reveals the vast and rich world of Indian Dance. The Eartha Academy was truly a wonderful experience which gave us a fabulous journey of sanctity.