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Vishvakarma’s Children

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Fri 19 Nov 2021
-
Sat 20 Nov 2021

10:00 AM - 3:30 PM (UTC+5.5)

Conference on Hindu Arts, Architecture & Artisan Traditions

SPEAKERS

:: Schedule ::

Day 01: Nov 19, Friday

 

Inaugural Session – 10.00am to 11.00am

1 Shefali Vaidya Welcome Address
2 Dr. Nagaraj Paturi Concept of the Conference
3 Jaya Jaitly Inaugural Address

 

Session 1: Sculptural & Architecture Traditions – 11.00am to 1.00pm

1 Dr. Vinay Kumar Philosophy and Culture behind Hindu Temple Architecture in India
2 K. P. Umapathy Acharya Veda and Architecture in a Vishwakarma Family
3 Dr. S. Udayakumar &
Dr. Diya Mukherjee
Revisiting the Role of Vishwakarmas in Indian Metallurgy (Lost Wax technique): Case Studies from Tamil Nadu and Kerala
4 Dr. V. P. Raghavan Heritage and Culture in a Creative Economy: The Vishwakarma Craftsmanship of Kerala
5 Roopa Vijay Comparative Study of Hindu Foundations in Naatyashaastra and Vaastushastra
6 Shankar Tripathi In Search of the ‘Chola Temple’ and its Composite Reality: A Study of the Chidambaram Nataraja Temple

 

Lunch Break – 1.00 to 2.00pm

Session 02: Sculptural & Architecture Traditions Continues – 2.00pm to 3.30pm

7 Mithilesh Baraily Toreutics and Ciselure
8 Prof. Sharada Srinivasan Short Film on Swamimalai
9 Ponni Selvanathan Migration of Tamil Architecture
10 Gayathri Shanmugavelan Revealing the Science Underlying this Sacred Tradition

 

Day 2: Nov 20, Saturday

Session 03: Arts & Philosophy – 10.00am to 1.00pm

1 Arun Yogiraj Interview Q&A
2 Mihir Keshari Making Sense of the ‘Sensible’: Colonialism and the Idea and Approaches to the Arts
3 Dr. Mahima Saxena A Psychological Examination of Vishwakarma’s Children: Pottery in India – from Antiquity to Now
4 Dr. Pradheep Chhalliyil Sculpture: The 3-D Form of Effective Communication in the Five Levels of Being
5 Rithik Pramod Analysis of Mural Paintings in Virupaksha Temple, Hampi
6 Alok Bhasin &
Puja Anand
At the Threshold between Sacred and Secular Spaces: A Study of Liminality at the Ghaats of Varanasi
7 Pushyamitra Joshi “Bhatti Pujan” A Ritual in Traditional Craft of Hand Block Printing Continuing by Namdev Chippa Community of Ummedpura – Tarapur Village of Madhya Pradesh
8 Shilpi S. Rajaganapathi Historical Monument of Saint Thiruvalluvar – The Unknown Facts and Secrets of a Challenging Creation

 

Lunch Break – 1.00pm to 1.30pm

Session 04: Sculptural & Architecture Traditions Continues – 1.30pm to 2.20pm

9 Christian de Vietri Interview Q&A
10 Dr. Siri Rama Dancing Shaktis– Depictions of the Sacred and Secular Feminine Principles through Dance in Hoysala Sculptures

 

Valedictory Session – 2.20pm to 3.00pm

Dr. Shashikala Ananth

Speakers
speaker

Ms Shefali Vaidya

Author

Shefali Vaidya is an award-winning author, newspaper columnist and a social media influencer. She is followed by more than half a million people on social media and is a familiar face on TV debates. She has worked with both traditional and new media and has been involved in television programming and content management for websites and writing for magazines and newspapers. She is associated as an Editorial Consultant with a Pune based Digital Media outfit, Ritam. Shefali writes on travel, history, parenting, temple architecture, Indian textiles as well as on Dharma and politics. She has her own bilingual V-log, Shef’s Special. Shefali holds a Masters degree in Mass Communications from the University of Pune, an advanced post-graduate diploma in Spanish language and a post-graduate diploma in Indology. Shefali is an Ananta Leadership Fellow.

speaker

Dr Nagaraj Paturi

Director, Indica

Dr Nagaraj Paturi trained in Sanskrit and Advaita Vedanta by his hyper-polyglot, polymath and spiritually accomplished sakala-shaastra-paarangata father, late Sri Paturi Sitaramanjaneyulu garu, he is seriously committed to the transmission of Vedic sciences to the present generation. He designed a very big number of courses of contemporary applications of Vedic Sciences and has been successfully teaching them and getting them taught. Presently he is Presently he is Director, Indic Academy And Distinguished Professor, Curriculum Designer, Executive Committee Member and Member, Board of Studies, MIT School of Vedic Sciences, Pune. Member, Board of Studies for Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth, Kavikulaguru Kalidasa Sanskrit University, Veda Vijnana Gurukula. Formerly Senior Professor of Cultural Studies FLAME School of Communication and FLAME School of Liberal Education Former Visiting Professor, University of Chicago, US) In his PhD (1998, UoH) Developed Indic Model of Myth Criticism of Literature. MPhil (1987, UoH) Brought out Vakyapadiyam as theoretical foundation of Ashtaadhyaayee Around 50 publications, around 60 conference /seminar/ workshop papers. Consultancy to numerous culture research and theater and dance innovation projects. Scores of creative writing works for Classical Dance, Modern Theater and magazines. Several series of talks and other programs on Radio and Television channels.

speaker

Jaya Jaitly

Jaya Jaitly is provocateur of a silent revolution in the traditional arts and crafts of India. She has inspired the kaarigars who in turn have inspired her, tirelessly, for decades. Through Dastakaari Haat Samiti, she has created viable platforms for artisans, craftsmen, and weavers, echoing the need to build a market for their work and saving the dying arts. She has worked at the Gujarat State Handloom Development Corporation, nourishing the old embroidery art in drought-struck Kutch in Gujarat, where stories of economic success and financial sustenance sprouted amidst despair, owing to her determination and efforts. Smt Jaitly's passion for cultural expressions has infused life into a number of efforts and initiatives meant to preserve and promote our cultural heritage. Her deep understanding of the dedicated community of artisans and their complex social fibre is exemplary. It stems from her seamless interactions with their arts at the grassroots. She has written several books including 'Crafts Atlas of India' and 'Vishwakarma's Children', showcasing Indian arts. She has helped evolve the language of arts and crafts by blending them with other facets in her seasoned engagement with culture. Having worked with three generations of craftsmen, she has encouraged a chain of confidence-driven collaborations between them, generating in the process, several opportunities for the makers of beautiful arts. In her journey as a cultural impresario, she has worked constantly, opening knots of gender, caste and other identities compartmentalising artisans, their traditional skills and ideas. Smt Jaitly is a woman of many weaves. When she drapes a sari, she does not merely wear a traditional Indian costume loved by women. She wears with pride, the marvellous stories and creative expressions from our weavers and regions woven into fabric, inspiring women across India to pass on the treasures and cultural narratives. She continues to give our longstanding traditional art and crafts the sacred thread of perseverance.

speaker

Dr. Vinay Kumar

Assistant Professor, Department of Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archaeology, Banaras Hindu University

speaker

K. P. Umapathy Acharya

Hereditary Architect and Sculptor Director, Institute of Sacred Architecture

K.P.Umapathy Acharya did Post graduation in Public Administration, but there was never any doubt in his mind, that one day, he would follow in the footsteps of his ancestors, the traditional sthapati from the Viswakarma community. His Grandfather Brahma Sri. K. Vaiyapuri Acharya and father Acharya N.Panchapagesan are well known Vedic, Silpa Sastras scholars and architects. His father taught, to Umapathy Acharya, not only the nuances and practical aspects of temple architecture but also about the foundation that this science has in our traditional texts. Sri. K.P.Umapathy Acharya, have presented research papers at many seminars and have authored articles on temple architecture and Silpa. He recently published two Silpa Sastras "Silpavidya Rahasyopanishad” and Ratha Laksana. Apart from such academic work, he is constructing new temples and helping to restore old ones. In 2004 he was given Best Artist Award by Govt. of Tamilnadu and 2008 he was honored by the Shanta Prasad Award for outstanding excellence in traditional knowledge and skill by the Crafts Council of India. In the year 2013, he had awarded with prestigious title” Abhinava Sarvasiddhi Acharya” in Badami, the capital of Chalukya kings. In the year 2016, he was awarded “Sri TV Kapali Sastry Award” instituted by Sakshi Trust, Bangalore. Sri. Acharya always interested to teach Vedas and Silpa texts and practical intricacies of Temple architecture.

speaker

Dr. S. Udayakumar

Post Doctoral Associate Heritage Science and Society Programme School of Humanities National Institute of Advanced Studies, IISc Campus Bangalore

Dr S. Udayakumar, currently working as a Post-Doctoral Research Associate in School of Humanities, National Institute of Advanced Studies, IISc, Bangalore. He has completed BFA in traditional Bronze sculpture from Govt. College of Architecture and Sculpture, Mamallapuram, M.A in (Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archaeology) from Deccan College Post Graduate Research Institute, Pune. He has completed his Doctoral research topic is “A Study of Iron technology in South-East Rajasthan with special reference to Iswal and Nathara-Ki-Pal”. His research is focused on ancient Indian heritage and especially archaeometallurgy and he has contacted bronze casting workshops for Museums, school and college students all over India. He did his experimental study on ancient iron technology which added to his Doctoral thesis, bone point making technique and pottery making technique. He has attended various excavations and exploration (Farmana in Haryana, Kotada-Bhabli in Gujarat, Teri and Keeladi, in Tamil Nadu). He has published papers in various journals like Heritage, Deccan College Bulletin, Pakistan Heritage, Today India, Centre for Heritage Studies (University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka) and Crucible (Historical Metallurgy Society). He has presented research papers in national and International conferences (Australasian Research Cluster for Archaeological Science, Department of Archaeology, University of Kerala, Indira Gandhi National Tribal University, Amarkantak, Department of Museology, University of Calcutta, Kolkata and International Congress Society of South Asian Archaeology, In Indian Museum, Kolkata etc.) He has delivered lectures on archaeology, ethnography, Indian craft and experimental archaeology in various Institute and university (Sharma Centre for Heritage Education Chennai, Christ University Bangalore, Tamil Nadu Open University Chennai, Vivekananda Institute of Indian Studies Mysuru, North-Eastern Hill University Shillong and Nagaland University, Kohima He has scholarship and fellowship of national and international awards such as (2012 and 2016 Nehru Trust Small Study Research Grant, New Delhi, 2014 ICHR JRF Fellowship, 2015 Received The Tylecote Memorial Fund, Historical Metallurgical Society, U.K, 2017 Akshara Foundation Grant for the Study of Ancient and Medieval Temple Architecture, 2017 Received INTACH Research Scholarship Award, 2018-2019 ICHR Research project grant, 2019 Received The Tylecote Memorial Fund, Historical Metallurgical Society, U.K , 2020 Virtual Fellowship Programme Award from the University of Liverpool, Liverpool and INSA young Historian for Science award 2021 . He has organized a few workshops and Web series of archaeology and heritage talks (Karu: Workshop of traditional bronze casting, Namma Bangaluru times and Debating Heritage).

speaker

Dr. Diya Mukherjee

Project Associate Heritage Science and Society Programme School of Humanities National Institute of Advanced Studies, IISc Campus Bangalore

Dr Diya Mukherjee is currently working at the National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore. She has conducted her doctoral (in Archaeology) and master’s degree (in Ancient History Culture and Archaeology) from Deccan College Post Graduate and Research Institute, Pune. She has completed her bachelor’s degree (Honours) from Jadavpur University, Kolkata. Her research interests include archaeo-metallurgy particularly Harappan metallurgy, experimental archaeology as well as ethnoarchaeology. She has participated in various archaeological excavations as a trained archaeologist at sites like Karsola, Rakhigarhi, etc. she had been awarded a UGC fellowship for her doctoral research and had been awarded various grants from prestigious institutes like INTACH Heritage Academy, Coghlan Bequest Grant (from Historical Metallurgical Society, London). She has published her research papers in the journals like Crucible, (from Historical Metallurgical Society, London), History Today (from The Indian Archaeological Society), Heritage: Journal of Multidisciplinary Studies in Archaeology (from the University of Kerala) and Deccan College Bulletin (from Deccan College Post Graduate and Research Institute, Pune). She has presented papers in many national and international conferences such as International Conference ASTRA Science and Technology: Retrospection and Aspirationheld at Deccan College in 2016, Craft’ in the Platinum Jubilee Seminar " Emergence of language, culture and Technologies" held at Sahithya Sansthan, Rajasthan, 2016, International Seminar on Field Archaeology held at University of Kerala, Thiruvananthapuram, 2017, in the International Conference on the Growth and Development of Indian Culture: Historical and Literary Perspectives (Prehistoric Period – 12th century CE) organized by Dr S.R Rao Memorial Foundation for Indian Archaeology, Art and Culture held at Bengaluru, 2018, in INAE Engineering Heritage Metallurgy Study Group Annual Meeting and Workshop on Digital Museum of Metallic Objects held at Deccan College Post Graduate & Research Institute (Deemed University), Pune, 2018, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati, Assam, 2019 to state some of the few she had presented her research papers. She has also delivered lectures at Jadavpur University, National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS), Bengaluru, etc.

speaker

Dr. V. P. Raghavan

TAGORE NATIONAL FELLOW AT INDIRA GANDHI NATIONAL CENTRE FOR THE ARTS MINISTRY OF CULTURE, GOVERNMENT OF INDIA REGIONAL CENTRE BANGALORE

speaker

Roopa Vijay

Architect

Having an academically good record since childhood, she has worked as an Architect for many years, excelled in performing Bharatanatyam, classical Karnatak music and light music and won number of prizes for painting, music , dance, essay, shloka contests. Being a student of Sangeetaratna Smt. Rajamma Keshavamurthy in classical music and guided by Smt. Meenakshi Radhakrishna and Bharatakalamani Dr. Radhakrishna, is promoting the Kolar School of Bharatanatyam. The institution Treasures Art Centre has made it possible to guide hundreds of students since 1988 in various fields. Many National awards and titles have been conferred on her like Natyamayuri, Singaramani, Best Citizen of India, Great Achiever of India, Bharat Gaurav Award, Rashtreeya Gaurav Award, Dancer of the Millenium, Pride of India Award, Nava Chitra Durga and so on over many years. She has presented Bharatamela in various parts of the country and researched on ‘Comparitive analysis of Kolar style of Bharatanatyam with the style of nartana as in Nandikeshvara’s Abhinaya Darpana’ to obtain the M.phil degree in Samskrutam at Karnataka Samskrit University. The study of Vaastushaastra has been a field of interest. Achievements published in various leading newspapers and magazines – Times Weekly, Eves Weekly, The City Tab, Mallige, Karmaveera, Vanitha, Tharanga, Mangala and others. Some reviews : • ‘It is evidently on cards that Roopa is a force to reckon in the realm of Bharathanatyam…’ • ‘ … We have in her a beautiful lady, a worthy human, an excelling architect, a dedicated dancer and an inspiring artist at their blended best ….’ She has also written and published research articles and papers in different fields.

speaker

Shankar Tripathi

Student

Shankar Tripathi is an undergraduate student of History and currently finishing his graduate study of art history and art appreciation from Jamia Millia Islamia, Delhi. With a keen interest in Indian art, he has found a penchant for all things cultural and historical, which over the past couple of years has translated into various writings featured at spaces like Art Fervour, DeCenter, The Punch Magazine, The Standpoint, Live Wire, among others. His recent publication includes a scholarly analysis of modern and postmodern works of art through a Freudian lens for the International Journal of Indian Psychology.

speaker

Mithilesh Baraily

Teacher, Trainer & Tour Guide

Mithilesh has diverse work experience from working in a corporate organization, as a teacher, trainer, and tour guide. He has worked with various social organizations, Government & political organization as well. He is a very community-oriented person and has been a founding member of some social organizations in Kalimpong. He is an independent researcher on Constitutions of India specially the Fifth and Sixth Scheduled and his community and their art form. He has been studying and practicing chalcography (toreutics and ciselure) for the past three years, he has studied Engineering. Mithilesh has been a strong voice for injustice and discrimination. Regardless of the social stigma with the art as it is a low-caste job that does not have much respect, due to this the ancient art is on the verge of extinction in the coming future. Where Mithilesh has been working hard to set an example and motivating the youths to take up the 3000 years old community art which has been passed verbally.

speaker

Prof. Sharada Srinivasan

Professor at the National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS), Bengaluru

Prof. Sharada Srinivasan received the Padhmashri, the fourth highest civilian award from Government of India last year in Archaeology in 2019. She has made pioneering contributions to the study of archaeology and history of art from the perspective of exploring engineering applications in these disciplines. Prof. Sharada Srinivasan’s landmark contributions include archaeometric characterisation of bronzes of South India using lead isotope analysis and archaeometallurgical studies on ancient mining and metallurgy in southern India. These span studies on the production mechanisms of high carbon wootz steel and documentation of artisanal technologies such as Aranmula high tin bronze metal mirror making, bronze casting at Swamimalai and ancient and continuing traditions of high-tin bronze working, while she has worked on artefacts in the Government Museum, Chennai, British Museum, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, ASI and so on. Prof. Sharada Srinivasan is elected International Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2021 and is Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain. Her awards include the Indian National Academy of Engineering Woman Engineer of the Year Award 2021 and Dr. Kalpana Chawla Young Women Scientist Award for 2011. She is first author of the book ‘India’s Legendary Wootz Steel’ and contributing author to ‘Ecstasy of Classical Art’, the bronze catalogue of National Museum, Delhi and co-editor of ‘Digital Hampi’ on digital explorations into the art and architecture of Hampi. She has also been an accomplished exponent of the classical dance form of Bharata Natyam and has given numerous lecture-demonstrations such as on the artistic and scientific perspectives on the Chola Nataraja bronze at international museums such as Royal Academy of Arts, London (2007) and with a photo-exhibition on the theme at Space City, Toulouse (2009) apart from national venues. She has earned her PhD from the Institute of Archaeology, University College London (1996) on Archaeometallurgy of South Indian bronzes; MA from School of Oriental & African Studies, London (1989) and BTech in Engineering Physics from IIT Bombay (1987).

speaker

Ponni Selvanathan

Ponni Selvanathan hails from the Sthapathya lineage and is also a disciple of Padmabhushan Dr.V.Ganapathi Sthapati. She was initiated into Vasthu shilpa shastra by Dr.V.Ganapathi Sthapathi when she was 16 years old. Later she got married to Dr.Ganapathi Sthapati's brother son Sri Selvanathan who is a leading and renowned temple architect of this tradition. This couple is spreading the Science and Technology of Vasthushilpa shastra through various temple projects within and outside India.

speaker

Gayathri Shanmugavelan

Vastu research scholar

Gayathri Shanmugavelan is a Vastu research scholar from Chennai, who have had fifteen years of association with the principles and practices of Indian traditional science of Vastu Shastra. Born into a family of Viswakarmas based in Kerala, Gayathri’s childhood and later years were groomed by her father and mentor Sri.P.S.Thankappan who was a scholar and community leader of Viswakarmas (artisan community of India). Her stint with the Viswakarma tradition took deeper roots after her marriage, as she stepped in as the second daughter-in-law at the household of Padmabhooshan Dr.V.Ganapati Sthapati, the father figure of Indian Vastu Shastra, under whose guidance she learnt the nuances of the traditional science of the Viswakarma art, architecture & sculpture. She married his brother’s son Er.R.Shanmugavelan who himself is a well-established professional Vastu architect cum civil engineer who owns Vastu based constructions firm ‘Manasara Constructions’ based in Chennai. While assisting her husband in building projects based on Vastu, Gayathri could learn more about the practical applications of the subtle Vastu principles which was found to have significant effect on building spaces and the vibrations they emanate.

speaker

Arun Yogiraj

speaker

Mihir Keshari

Student

Mihir Keshari, a master's student at Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University. Interested in poetry, philosophy and praxis.

speaker

Dr. Mahima Saxena

Psychological Scientist, Researcher, Educator

Mahima Saxena, PhD has been honored with the Humanitarian Award from the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP). The annual award is given in recognition of a SIOP member who has made sustained, significant, and outstanding humanitarian contributions related to I-O psychology. Contributions can take many different forms, including: supporting humanitarian initiatives; promoting prosocial I-O psychology through work with international non-governmental organizations and multilateral agencies; contributing to theory and/or practice in the area of humanitarian work psychology focusing on social responsibility and reduction of human suffering through organizational actions; and contributing to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals through I-O psychology.

speaker

Dr. Pradheep Chhalliyil

a Scientist, Educator, Speaker, Entrepreneur and an Author

Dr. Challiyil co-founded a 503(c) tax-exempt non-profit non-religious organization called Sakthi Foundation. More than 23 Million View hits, the web page has information on all aspects of life based on Universal Energy Pattern. With this approach traditional knowledge based problem solving approach on health, education, Professionalism, Selftual improvement and Spiritualism are offered through Uni5 Schools and training programs as well.

speaker

Rithik Pramod

Student

Rithik is currently pursuing Master’s degree in Archaeology and Ancient History from Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, where he completed his undergraduate degree as well. He is a sociable person who has a keen interest towards Ancient Cultures, Ancient History, Heritage Mapping, Documentation of Neglected Sites, History of Cuisines and so on. He is associated with various esteemed Organizations like ICOMOS India, Asiatic Society For Social Science Research, Europa Nostra and European Students Association for Cultural Heritage. Besides academics, Rithik is also passionate about Writing Blogs, Travelling, Basketball, Chess and Table Tennis.

speaker

Alok Bhasin

Architect and Interior Designer

Alok Bhasin is an Architect and Interior Designer with over 22 years of professional experience, both in India and abroad. Currently he is working as Associate Professor with the Interior Design Department at the School of Design at Pearl Academy, New Delhi, India. With a strong design focus and a passion for innovative & interactive design, Alok is deeply interested in all aspects of Art and Design, Design History, Literature, Traditional Crafts, Heritage and Sustainability.

speaker

Puja Anand

Interior Designer, Associate Professor

Puja Anand is an Interior Designer, working as Associate Professor with the Interior Design and Styling Department at the School of Design at Pearl Academy, New Delhi 110027 INDIA . She has a keen interest in Traditional Cultural Crafts of India. She has done some research and product development in the crafts sector along with her students. She is deeply interested in application of cultural crafts in Interiors and spaces as she believes that the contemporary application of crafts in modern interiors can help in sustenance of our rich heritage and culture.

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Pushyamitra Joshi

First generation craft entrepreneur and Eco print artist

Pushyamitra is a first generation craft entrepreneur and eco print artist. Prior to start venturing into rural handicrafts business he has gained experience in marketing diverse portfolios like banking products, education and events. While working extensively on his thesis work, learnt about the different traditional hand block printing techniques of India like Ajrakh print, Bagh print, Dabu printit and Nandana print mainly practiced by rural craftsmen. It helped him to understand and identify the problems in marketing of rural handicraft products faced by rural craftsmen and encouraged him to start venture called “EcoFab – Eco clothing for healthy living. His work with block printing and handloom involves rare combination of traditional and innovation in terms of using natural dyes and threads. He works with both traditional motif and introduced some contemporary motif in block printing. He innovated a new block printing technique with Tarapur printers of Madhya Pradesh now known as “Puru print”. He played a pivotal role in reviving use of manjishtha roots natural dye in traditional hand block printing. Before 19th century India was the biggest exporter of natural dyes and especially Indian madder was known for its vibrant shades of red.

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Shilpi S. Rajaganapathi

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Christian de Vietri

Artist

Christian de Vietri is an Australian-born artist who is internationally recognised for his traditional sculptures and large-scale artwork in public spaces throughout Asia, Europe, the USA, and Australia. His most celebrated work is perhaps the 30-metre-tall sculpture titled “Spanda”, which was inspired by the spanda principle in Trika Śaivism and has become an icon of the city of Perth where it is permanently installed. His education as an artist began with a BFA in Visual Art at Curtin University in Australia. He went on to study at the School of Fine Art in Marseille and the National School of Fine Art Paris, and in 2009 completed an MFA at Columbia University in New York. In addition to his experience with contemporary visual art, Christian has undergone rigorous gurukulam training in traditional Indian Art and Architecture under the tutelage of Vāstu Ratna Dr. Jessie Mercay in the Vishwakarma lineage of Dr. V. Ganapati Sthapati. He is also a scholar/practitioner of Trika Śaivism, having been initiated into the practice of meditation by Paul Muller-Ortega. Several streams of knowledge and a wide range of skills come together to form the work of Christian de Vietri, which has been focused on authentically reviving ancient tradition using contemporary technology. His sculptures have been exhibited in galleries and museums internationally, such as the Columbia University Wallach Gallery, Deitch Projects in New York, the National Gallery of Bulgaria in Sofia, the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney, the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney, the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra, and the Institute of Contemporary Art in Perth. His artworks have also been acquired by several public collections including the Emily Fisher Landau Collection in New York, the Aïshti Art Foundation in Beirut, the Kerry Stokes Collection in Australia, the John Curtin Gallery Collection in Perth, the ArtBank Collection in Melbourne, and the Art&Australia Collection in Sydney. Numerous awards have been bestowed upon Christian de Vietri, most notably he was recognised in Australia with a Citizen of the Year Award for his contribution to Visual Art.

speaker

Dr. Siri Rama

Bharata Natyam and Kuchipudi dancer, teacher and choreographer

Dr. Siri Rama is a Bharata Natyam and Kuchipudi dancer, teacher and choreographer based in Singapore. She is also the founder-director of the dance institution in Mumbai, the Kanaka Sabha Performing Arts Centre. She holds a PhD in the Fine Arts on the study of Dance Sculptures in Belur and Halebidu temples from the University of Hong Kong and has performed to critical acclaim, presented group performances, and lectured, in many different cities of India and in many parts of the world including the USA, Germany, the Middle East, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Taiwan, Singapore and Thailand. She has choreographed and presented several solo and group dance performances to traditional as well as contemporary themes. She has collaborated with musicians and dancers from many other genres including Hindustani music, Chinese and Malay dance, and computer musicians. She is served four terms as the president of the Singapore chapter of World dance Alliance Asia Pacific. She is Adjunct Faculty at the School of Social Sciences, Singapore Management University and Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (Singapore). She has recently published a book, Dance Divine: Dancing Deities of India, Shubhi Publications (2021)

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Dr. Shashikala Ananth

A Renowned Architect and expert on Vaastu Shastra

Sashikala Ananth is an architect by qualification and holds a bachelor’s degree in Architecture from the Madras School. Sashikala has researched the classical Indian science of Architecture – vAstu, for over twenty years. She was a student of Sri Ganapati Sthapati, a leading authority on the vAstu shAastra. She also studied Yoga at the Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram in this period. Having studied the vAstu texts extensively, assimilating traditional wisdom and exploring its field application, she now works on projects incorporating the wisdom of vAstu in creative and harmonious ways with the modern lifestyle. Her work as a behavioral scientist has been largely focused on helping NGO’s and Educational Institutions. Currently the founder of Ritambhara Ashram where she runs her own workshops and teaching programs. She is the author of the popular 'The Penguin Guide to Vaastu'