On the last day of November, Jayson Singh our artist-in-residence, ran his Rangoli Inspired Painting Workshop as part of Christ’s school’s after-school Art Club programme. This opportunity was offered to compliment Art & Design subjects taught at the school, as well as providing a fun and relaxed practical activity.
The workshop commenced with a very brief presentation about the origins of Rangoli Art. Within this time, Jayson had the chance to have a rough idea of whether the students had ever seen Rangoli before, and after a flattering array of impressive responses, the artist was relieved to then have very few knowledge gaps to fill.
The knowledge gaps that were covered involved describing how all the natural colours used in Rangoli designs are made and an explanation of this practice being ephemeral. After noticing some disappointed expressions, the artist reassured the students by revealing that they would all be making permanent versions which they could take home.
One of the major concepts that Jayson wanted to draw attention to, was an awareness of colour interaction: a painterly device not only applied within his personal work, but also by many contemporary artists. By making sticky templates that had classic Rangoli designs already pre-cut onto one surface, the artist was able to create a condition that focussed solely on catching granules of colour, without being concerned about drawing lines or gluing.
While demonstrating the technique of applying colour by sprinkling from a height onto a sticky template, Jayson was able to explain how you can control the level of interaction between warm and cool colours. For example, purple interacts more intensely when placed next to yellow than green which is more subtle. The artist then showed that you can vary this even more by blending colours to form a sunset gradient.
Armed with these tools, the students began to create their own colour interactions. The amount of excitement during the workshop was reflected in the myriad combinations of colour schemes that were produced. Many inventive decisions were made that Jayson had never seen before, such as a three-coloured sunset gradient! Once the templates were hung on an improvised gallery wall made of recycled foam board, it was clear that every student had made a very unique Rangoli Inspired Painting.
Jayson would like to thank all the artists who participated in his workshop