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AshAditi (timeless art)
'Rangoli'- Indian Folk Floor Art, also known as the ‘Welcome’ prayer floor Art:
Rangoli is a traditional Indian folk floor-art typically installed at the entrances of Hindu temples and homes during times of celebration and religious festivals in India and now in Canada.
Each state of India has its own way of painting Rangoli designs that exude a pattern in color that is specific for each region.
Traditional Rangoli patterns & Designs:
Traditionally, the materials mainly used to make Rangoli are edibles like various spices & grains, rice flour, flowers and leaves, beads & cut- out mirror are used as decorations at times.
All over India, floor paintings, especially boarders are essentially white in color. White is a symbol of peace, purity and tranquility.
The material used predominantly is rice flour or rice paste, because rice to all Indians is a sign of prosperity.
Yet another symbol of prosperity is the color yellow. Turmeric yellow or ocher is also often used to fill in the white outlines, although pea green, rust brown and invariably bright colours are used too.
More often however, vermilion is used. Vermilion, is considered auspicious. The ‘diyas’ (oil lamps or candles), that are used in between the design symbolising prosperity.
Design: “The Spiritual Unity: Unity is Divinity, Divinity is Enlightenment”
AshAditi's design for this Rangoli piece was inspired by one of her paintings (right).
This Rangoli design is made up of several lotus petals within which various religious faiths symbols are embedded.
The artistic floral display of the world's major religious symbols results in a profound interaction between the viewer and the art, in a way that stimulates an inner experience of deep compassion, joy, and acceptance. Moreover, it is meant to encourage the Canadian Multicultural Citizens to keep open pathways for mutual understanding and acceptance between people of different faiths.
The context of the design of this ‘Rangoli’ – floral with specific religious emblem in each petal, portrays the Universal message of PEACE and EQUALITY of respect for ALL religions; as well as the true meaning of Rangoli – the welcome prayer artwork.
AshAditi chose to fully explore the use of a combination of various authentic traditional mediums generally used in creating ‘Rangoli’ along with reused and recycled materials’ of various types to compose the design of this ‘Rangoli’.
She believes that recycled materials have a history. They can be broken down, torn, cut, layered, and reworked until they are reassembled to create something more beautifully meaningful. Fragments and layers mark the passing of time, the rituals of making (gathering of materials, creating, manipulating and recycling) acting as a part of the narrative of the artwork and its creative artistic transformation, that is also eco friendly.
As an Artist, besides facilitating 'Rangoli' workshops in the community hubs, hospitals and schools, to create a 'Floral rangoli' reflective theme template to be used as a base for expanding themes in aid to advocate literacy skills by its connection of themes and core values to the curriculum; AshAditi has been commissioned to install her outdoor Rangolis at various Festivals in Toronto.
AshAditi's oversized outdoor floor arts, Rangolis, have been displayed at the Luminat'Eau Festival, Harbourfront, Toronto (June 2008); at 'Sharing Our Traditions' festival at the Spadina Museum, Toronto (November 2008); and at the Winterlicious Festival at 'Spice Route Restaurant' (February 2009) and the latest at ‘Just For Laughs Festival’ – Toronto Dundas Square (July 2009).
At the Luminat'Eau Festival at Toronto's Harbourfront, AshAditi exhibited an oversized (10x10 ft) outdoor Rangoli, using predominately reused and recycled materials. This eco-cultural piece of art was crafted using a combination of used cardboard, wrapping/tissue paper, beer bottle caps, cardboard cylinders from the inside of empty toilet rolls and kitchen napkin rolls, inside of photographic film roll winder, kitchen aluminium foil, stones and pebbles, compact discs (cds), marbles, beads from old jewellery, artificial flowers, yarn etc.with an audience participation component to engender enthusiasm and, motivation for learning about multicultural heritage and beyond. Outdoor Rangoli at the Luminat'Eau Festival - Harbourfront Toronto- June 2008. Click - HarbourfrontCentre
With positive responses towards her "Unity is Divinity" Rangoli design, Panorama India commissioned AshAditi to install this particular Rangoli (8 x 8 ft) at the "Sharing Our Traditions" exhibit at Toronto's Spadina Museum, using a different set of artistic materials such as puffed rice, lentils, flowers, paint, and candles, added to the element of cultural community collaborative celebration and learning componen, where the Museum's Edwardian Christmas tradtionss came together with the celebrations of Diwali in India.
The buzz behind AshAditi's Rangoli artwork has been spreading not only amongst Toronto's art community, but also among the larger community, including business owners. Liberty Entertainment Group and recently, the Spice Route Restaurant, have employed her to showcase her Rangoli in the foyer of the restaurant during the Winterlicious Festival, using an array of Indian spices as her art medium.
AshAditi’s latest 12 x 12 ft outdoor Rangoli tool place at ‘Just For Laughs Festival’ Toronto Dundas Square, on July 17 & 18, 2009. For the Rangoli Art, she used a combination of authentic traditional; other reused and recycled materials, with an added enhancing luminous ambience as a welcome prayer for the event. To view the Rangoli art, click Just for Laughs