Drawing, Collecting and Colonial Modernity in India
Having looked at the emergence of certain types of institutions in Europe, we now shift our focus towards how the transformations of the late 1800s in Britain were linked with the changes in design and labour practices of craftspeople in the Indian subcontinent.
The hierarchical relationship between the metropole and the colony results in cultural developments in the former being imposed upon the latter, even though it is through colonial extraction that these developments were even possible. The pedagogies of drawing at the department of science and art method at the Kensington museum, introduced by Henry Cole and Owen Jones proved influential for crafts around the world. Then there is the case of Lockwood Kipling and the Lahore Museum where drawing was taught to carpenters and architects creating new definitions of craft in the British Raj. Click on the video below to watch Dr Annapurna Garimella along with Dr Nadine Zubair tell us about these shifting trends in theory, practice, pedagogy and collection of craft in that era.
About the Guest Speaker:
Dr Nadine Zubair is the Digital Humanities Manager at the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at the University of East Anglia (UEA). She has a PhD in South Asian architectural history from the Department of Art History and World Art Studies at UEA. Previously, she has completed an MSc in Information Systems Management from Carnegie Mellon University, an MA in South Asian Art History from the University of Pennsylvania, and an MA in South Asian archaeology from the University of Peshawar. Her dissertation title is “Material Histories and Wood-Carving: Fragments from Modern Punjab,” which was fully funded by the South Asian Decorative Arts and Crafts Collection (SADACC) in Norwich.
With the emergence of colonial modernity, new definitions of “craft” developed in India. In this lesson, we explore this development by learning new pedagogies of craft and art methods, specifically those that were implemented with local craftspeople during that era. To delve further, follow the list of resources provided below:
1. “Annapurna Garimella: A Pedagogy of Breath and Posture, Modern Architectural Education in India”. Produced by CEPT Research and Development Foundation. Architecture in India, April 2020. Podcast, audio, 28:44. Listen here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1kM4rXK3kVOWJ0oZaUQf6fI7ntZ-OX2Z9/view?usp=drive_link
2. ‘Owen Jones and The Grammar of Ornament’. Victoria & Albert Museum, London.
3. Owen Jones, The Grammar of Ornament, 1856, Day & Son, London, Digital Collections, New York Public Library. The Miriam and Ira D Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, New York.
4. Zubair, Nadine. “Material Histories and Wood-Carving: Fragments from Modern Punjab”, Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia, 2020.