Kerala Arts & Crafts Village, the sprawling campus to promote and showcase Kerala’s vibrant art and cultural heritage, at Vellar near Kovalam is all set to welcome visitors
Spread around 8.5 acres of panoramic locale, Kerala Arts and Crafts Village is an ideal destination for visitors and art buffs alike to enjoy the best of Kerala’s traditional, folk, and ethnic art, craft, and performing traditions. The key features of the complex include an amphitheater, museums, studios for craftspeople to work, and an art gallery, enabling the visitors to have a hands-on feel of the rich and diverse heritage of Kerala handed down through centuries.
“Kerala Martial Arts Academy, floated by the State Government to preserve and promote centuries-old Kalaripayattu, will also be housed in the Arts and Crafts Village,” said Mr, Kadakampally Surendran, Minister for Tourism, Government of Kerala.
“A part of Kerala’s southern tourism circuit, Kerala Arts and Crafts Village is a unique project to present the splendid artistic legacy of south Kerala before a larger audience. It will be a go-to spot for tourists in the post-COVID phase, besides being an easy-to-reach family outing site for people in the region,” he added.
The campus has dedicated spaces for artisans and craftspeople, mostly from south Kerala, to work and sell their exquisite and authentic products. Visitors can buy souvenirs and curios to add to their collection.
Ms. Usha Thakur, Minister for Tourism, Madhya Pradesh, along with a team of officials from her state visited the Village.
“Kerala Arts and Crafts Village have all the potential to be a hub of cultural events and spectacles for domestic and foreign tourists. It can also be an academic destination on traditional arts and crafts,” said Mr. Bala Kiran, Director. Kerala Tourism
The facility has modules for over 750 craftsmen and artisans excelling in a variety of traditions to work on their concepts while being looked on by visitors. The artists to be engaged by the campus include those working on a variety of materials like wood, bamboo, reed, coconut shells, palm leaf, coir, and cotton. More than 50 crafts are presented in 28 studios with facilities for production, display, and sales.
The village has the presence of personalities like Gopi Master, who was conferred with Padma Shri for his contributions to handloom, and KR Mohanan, who had won the Shilpa Guru Award.
An annual international theme-based art and craft biennale, which will feature paintings, terracotta, handloom, sculptures, and reed and bamboo products along with workshops, will be conducted in the Village. Craft food festivals (in April) and arts festivals (in September) are other highlights of the village calendar. Besides, an annual international handicraft products festival is being planned for December.
Offering glimpses of Kerala’s history and heritage, cultural programmes, and light-and-sound shows will be held at the venue regularly. Setting up an art and craft research center and sale outlets for architects and interior and fashion designers have also been planned at the campus, turning it into a world-class art and craft complex.
Kerala Arts & Crafts Village has a design strategy lab, game zones, handloom village, reading rooms, food courts, walkways, and rest areas, making it an all-inclusive leisure spot.