In January 2015, I had the opportunity to work with the students of Georgia Elementary School as artist-in-residence. The 2nd through to 4th graders made some incredible work and we began by studying ephemeral art around the world. Over the course of 4 days, the students prepared their materials, created their own designs and participated in a group Rangoli. We also experienced being mindful and explored some mindful doodling. Tiles created during the residency will be exhibited at the Vermont Statehouse in March for Youth Art Month.
For the month of April 2014, I had the opportunity to teach two arts-integrated residencies at the IAA in Burlington, VT. Working with both 1st-grade classes (with teachers Jen Nesson and Alice Patalano,) we integrated social studies and mathematics with visual arts. Focusing on the art of India, we studied Rangoli, even visiting the Tibetan Monks at the Fleming Museum who were in residence for a week creating an intricate sand Mandala. The students were captivated. Having over 6 hours of contact time with each student was a gift–we managed to cover some significant ground–making permanent Rangoli tiles from rice and some temporary group designs.
I also had the opportunity to work with Stephanie Decarreau’s 2nd grade class. The arts-integrated focus was on mathematics and visual art and again, Rangoli proved to be a wonderful vehicle for leaning about shapes, angles, symmetry and pattern.
Choosing to make a ‘stained-glass’ wall-hanging, the students worked together to create some beautiful designs and experimented with group Rangolis. All work will be exhibited at the BCA Center–the opening will take place on Thursday May 22nd, 4-6pm.
In February I visited the Lesley Ellis School, an independent school, preschool through Grade 6, located in Arlington, MA. We covered a lot of ground, in short classes of 30 – 45 minutes. The students were able to learn about Rangoli through a visual presentation and witness its uses, history, processes and materials. They then had the opportunity to create their own Rangoli design using a blank grid and create a foundation for a further, more in-depth study at some time in the future. It was a great day and a lot of fun. Many thanks to Laura Douglass for your help and support.
If you are interested in booking a Rangoli workshop for your school, either day-long or residency, or would just like some further information, please contact me, Gowri Savoor, on firstname.lastname@example.org
In December 2009, I was invited to work with the pupils of Thatcher Brook Primary School during a one-week cultural residency. It was a fun and busy week – each of the 350 pupils had the opportunity to learn about Rangoli design and construction and have some hands-on experience.
Half the school worked on a traditional Rangoli, working with rice and lentils. The rice was affixed to an 8ft x 4ft panel board and varnished, so the school could keep it on permanent display.
The remainder of the school worked towards a stained glass Rangoli. This is also on permanent display within the school.