6 Indian artist villages that will make you fall in love with art

Artist villages in India offer the curious and the artistically-inclined both inspiration and instruction. At some, you will be able to witness the skills of artisans of the region, while at others, you can stay in the village, for hands-on guidance in learning a new form of art and craft. Are you wondering where these villages are? Here’s a list:

1) Name: Andretta

State: Himachal Pradesh 

Image Credit: Nat Geo Traveller

Andretta village, set against the backdrop of the Himalayas, was founded in 1935 by an Irish woman. It’s considered a safe haven for theatre artists, potters and other creative souls. Plus, Andretta also offers a 3-week residential pottery course, which includes boarding (homestay accommodation + home-cooked meals!), lodging and instruction. For more information, visit: Andretta Pottery

2) Name: Cholamandal

State: Tamil Nadu

Image Credit: The Hindu

For a span of 4 decades, Cholamandal has been the nation’s largest self-supporting artist village. At present, it has over 20 community artists who live as a close-knit unit and exhibit their skills. Here, you can also attend different cultural plays which will surely liven up your mood. For more information: Cholamandala Artist Village

3) Name: Bishnupur

State: West Bengal

Image Credit: Pallab Seth

Ever wondered where did the term ‘Baluchari silk’ come from? Yes, you’re right, it originated from this region known for special saris made by local artisans. Plus, there’s an art mart in Bishnipur, at which you can see art and craft pieces made by the nomadic tribes of Bishnupur. For more information visit: Tour East

4) Name: Raghurajpur

 State: Odisha

Image credit: SIA Photography

Puri’s traditional art, Pattachitra, originated from Raghurajpur. This age-old craft has been passed on from one generation to the next, and every family has its own unique style of designing a Pattachitra. And yes, you can learn how to create these gorgeous and intricate paintings at a workshop in the village. Additionally, Pattachitra is the home of the late Guru Kelu Charan Mohapatra, the pioneer of Odissi dance in India. If you wish to learn this form of performing arts, you can take lessons here. For more information visit: Shree Khetra

5) Name: Shilpgram

 State: Rajasthan

Shilpgram is an ideal place for art lovers as it highlights the lifestyle of different artisan villages in Rajasthan. You can observe craftsmen and artisan at work inside their huts, ask questions and learn more about the pieces they create. Another reason to visit is the Shilpgram Mahotsav. This festival takes place at the end of the year for a span of 10 days, and is the perfect opportunity for art enthusiasts to get their hands on indigenous artwork. For more information visit: Shilpgram

6) Name: Pochampally

Image Credit: Craftsvila

 State: Hyderabad

The silk weaving destination of Hyderabad, Pochampally, is visited throughout the year by travellers and artists, for good reason. Here, thousands of weavers work together to create intricate sari designs and patterns. You can definitely attend a weaving session with the local artisans and learn more about the process.

Have we missed out on an artist village that you know of and recommend? Let us know in the comments below.

Featured image credit: Miss Nancy Says Travel

Written by Disha Mukherjee



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