The technological boom of the past two decades has led us into a feeling of hyper-connectedness with the outside world; yet, largely unacknowledged is the percentage of the world’s population who cannot be merely reached by the
simple click of a mouse. In an increasingly de-personalized world, House of Pennathur strives to reach these individuals and incorporate them into a larger global economy, to aid them and their families and truly sustain them by rekindling the passion for artisanal crafts in India.
Highly labor intensive these crafts are the life blood of the folks in India
Tradition has been an important back drop in the way arts and crafts are viewed and practiced in India. This is because it forms the foundation for new art forms! Unlike the arts, crafts are things we use in everyday life.
All tools are essentially an extension of the hand in the craft movement. The tools help the artisan to finish an object with quality and perfection. Decorative elements are added and it becomes an object of beauty. Form and function merge!
In this series I want to explore the various crafts that are present in “Designs by Sudha”.
People often ask me how I get my ideas for new designs. The Indian “bazaar” is a formidable design play field. One discovers colors and patterns that are not
normally seen in the city life. Driving through rural India, there is this harmony between people, animals and nature. They all seem to co-exist without conflict. The inherent chaos provides rich fodder for design ideas.
The artisan was also the trader who plied his wares after making them in his village. With people like me in the midst, he is allowed to practice his craft with the designs given by me. I am then responsible to market his hand work and he is free to practice his craft without the challenges of the marketplace!
It is a fantastically exciting, rewarding, and sometimes a frustrating endeavor. We have an excellent staff in India and outstanding artisans – the true cream of the crop; so, obviously, our experience after 25+ years is very streamlined and reliable. Many of the functions are fully automated and runs seamlessly. Customers and competitors who try to work directly with India often revert back to us. We are able to succeed where others fail, because of our unique understanding of both the crafts and the families that do them. We also have a 24/7 presence in India.