5 NGO’s Who Are Using Creative Ways To Keep Art Alive In India.

5 ngo's (1)

India, the home to one of the oldest civilizations in the world, has an abundance of beautiful art forms. Most of these art forms are either forgotten, or still live on as they are and some have been molded to fit the needs of globalization.

However, with the advent of globalization, the value of aesthetic moments has changed. While culture and traditions give us a sense of belonging, it only represents the outward appearance of things instead of their inner significance. Hence, in order to preserve, promote and protect the art in India, there are various NGO’s in India that realize the importance of creating awareness about it. In this piece, Paintcollar brings to you, five Indian non-profits that have been successful in promoting Art through creative methods.

1. ST+ART

St+art India is a non profit organization that aims to make art as accessible as finding it on the streets of India. Through their art festivals in major cities like Delhi, Bangalore and Bombay, they work towards changing the visual landscape of a city through installations, murals, screenings, tours, workshops and more. In their Delhi edition of the festival, which was held in February 2016, St+art managed to rope in more than 25 artists from across the globe. They were successful in transforming Delhi’s Lodhi Colony into India’s first public art district. In an attempt to resume the use of street art as a social and participatory action, issues like women empowerment and Clean India Mission were also addressed.

The next edition is going to be hosted in Bombay in October! Don’t forget to sign up and witness this initiative promote art.

Art by Sam and Soph (Singapore) at Arjan Garh metro station in Delhi, 2017.
Art by Sam and Soph (Singapore) at Arjan Garh metro station in Delhi, 2017.
'This is commissioned vandalism' by Daku Graffiti in New Delhi, 2015.
‘This is commissioned vandalism’ by Daku Graffiti in New Delhi, 2015.
Artist is Artez (Serbia) in Malviya Nagar, Delhi.
Artist is Artez (Serbia) in Malviya Nagar, Delhi.
“We love Colour” by Hanif Kureshi in Lodhi Colony, the first public art district of India.
“We love Colour” by Hanif Kureshi in Lodhi Colony, the first public art district of India.
Artist is Yantr (India) and this work can be found in Bandra, Mumbai.
Artist is Yantr (India) and this work can be found in Bandra, Mumbai.

2. The Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art (FICA)

An Indian non-profit organization, FICA aims to widen the audience for Indian contemporary art, increase prospects for artists, and develop an ongoing dialogue between arts, artists and the people through various events, education and public art projects. One of their primary events is “young at art”, a program that gives autonomy to children’s creativity and imagination, while familiarizing them to art and its historical perspectives. They also have various national-level awards, scholarships and grants to promote emerging artists and their art work. FICA understands the grave need for quality research in India and through the FICA Research Fellowship, they aim to recognize, support and inspire researchers, writers and scholars working in the field of visual arts.

Artists interested in Media Arts can apply for a residency program organized by the Agency for Cultural Affairs, Government of Japan. You will get to stay in Tokyo on an all-expenses paid trip, with an aim to not only support the creation of significant artworks but also to stimulate cross-cultural dialogues. Deadline: September 19, 2017.

An interactive session for children at the exhibition ‘A Ramachandran: A Retrospective – Drawings, Sketches and Studies’ and ‘Ekalinji Fantasy – Paintings and Sculptures’
An interactive session for children at the exhibition ‘A Ramachandran: A Retrospective – Drawings, Sketches and Studies’ and ‘Ekalinji Fantasy – Paintings and Sculptures’
Art by Shailesh BR, the winner of FICA Emerging Artist Award, 2015.
Art by Shailesh BR, the winner of FICA Emerging Artist Award, 2015.
The project, a floating bamboo raft, is the third in a series of public art interventions on the River Brahmaputra by Indrani Baruah.
The project, a floating bamboo raft, is the third in a series of public art interventions on the River Brahmaputra by Indrani Baruah.

3. Very Special Arts India (VSAI)

Established in 1986, Very Special Arts India (VSAI) is a non-profit organization that works to create a platform where all those with disabilities can come together in order to create, learn and enjoy the arts. They firmly believe in their motto: to fortify the belief of those less privileged, that, no mental or physical challenge need ever limit the human potential to create and excel. Unlike other organizations working with the disabled, VSAI uses remedial art therapies including visual arts, dance, music and crafts. “Art as therapy” embodies the idea that art making is, in and of itself, therapeutic and that the creative process is a growth-producing experience. Art is used by VSAI to support, maintain, and improve the psychosocial, physical, cognitive and spiritual health of individuals of all ages. They believe that art, in any form, enhances the health and has a positive effect on the quality of life.

Anyone can volunteer to generously contribute their time and skills to help run the activities to help the children and youth, through art.

Each child is given personal care and attention.
Each child is given personal care and attention.
Art and sculptural pieces on display on the inaugural day of the India Art fair, where VSAI participated.
Art and sculptural pieces on display on the inaugural day of the India Art fair, where VSAI participated.
Art by the VSAI students at their activity centre in New Delhi.
Art by the VSAI students at their activity centre in New Delhi.

4. Indian Institute of Cartoonists (IIC)

The Indian Institute of Cartoonists is a one of its kind organization, that has been established with the sole aim to promote the art of cartooning in India. Based out of Bangalore, this organization aims to provide recognition to talents in cartooning, reward them and give them an opportunity to showcase their artworks. IIC has done commendable work in order to preserve this art form for the future generations, guide the budding cartoonists and primarily to promote this art among the masses. Presumably, IIC is one of the few organizations that successfully works in the field of cartooning. They organize cartoon galleries for budding artists every month, host various cartoon workshops and have numerous awards that are bestowed upon those who have excelled in the art of cartooning.

The organization will soon be starting a one-year certificate course in Cartooning. The candidates will be training in spheres like basics of cartooning, caricatures, political and social cartoons and even be educated about the business and advertising aspects of cartooning.

Best Foreign Cartoon Award 2016 - Liu Quiang, China.
Best Foreign Cartoon Award 2016 – Liu Quiang, China.
Late Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam had visited the Indian Cartoon Gallery, 2010.
Late Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam had visited the Indian Cartoon Gallery, 2010.
 The Indian Institute of Cartoonists in Bangalore recently featured the ‘funtoons’ of award-winning cartoonist Vladimir Kazanevski.
The Indian Institute of Cartoonists in Bangalore recently featured the ‘funtoons’ of award-winning cartoonist Vladimir Kazanevski.

5. Happy Hands Foundation

 Happy Hands Foundation is a non-profit organization that is dedicated towards the revitalizing of traditional or folk arts and crafts, that will assist in empowering rural artisans and promoting community development. Sorrowfully, more than 200 Indian crafts are on the verge of extinction today and many artisans have switched to other labor jobs. Through the process of industrialization and globalization, the life of craftsman and artisans has been reduced to extreme poverty. Today, Happy Hands foundation markets arts and crafts as distinctive and unheard of as Sujini, Dhokra, Cheriyal, Bidri, and Sikki grass. Through their various programs, Happy Hands has successfully introduced artisan products for corporate gifting, helped Indian artists to inculcate more through international exchange programs and inspired artisans to start their own ventures and sell their products online.

Join them and indulge in the journey of the forgotten significance of heritage and culturally rich arts and crafts, artisan empowerment, youth leadership and entrepreneurship in arts, and cultural exchanges.

Happy Hands promotes the Art of Making of Puppets.
Happy Hands promotes the Art of Making of Puppets.
Various products at display at an exhibition by Happy Hands.
Various products at display at an exhibition by Happy Hands.
Matchboxes designed as souvenirs to celebrate the 100 years of Delhi.
Matchboxes designed as souvenirs to celebrate the 100 years of Delhi.

There are two kinds of people in this world- the ones who feel and the ones who think. Thankfully, there are various non-governmental organizations who feel as well as think and strive towards helping and promoting a cause for the greater good.

Hope you had a good and informative read!

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