Dastkari Haat celebrates its 35th year of working with India’s crafts persons
1-15 April 2021 - Dilli Haat opposite INA market, New Delhi
Don’t miss the great annual event self-financed by craftspeople
The Dastkari Haat Samiti has been working for the dignity and economic uplift of its
members since March 1986. It is a huge milestone to emerge out of the troubles of the Covid-
19 pandemic to create multiple events to mark its three and a half decades of creative work.
Despite limited resources and problems of collective activity and even mobility, we have
some major offerings for the public.
All those who have heard about Dilli Haat, our popular crafts bazaars, our energetic and
vibrant offerings that take place in January, can join us in April to engage with craftspeople
face-to-face. Restart conversationswith them to ask about their skills and lives during the
We have some major announcements of work we have done, and work ahead :
1) Special Exhibition - The Sari Specialists of India
Our Dastkari Haat will incorporate 15 craftspersons under the exhibition title Sari
Specialists of India. We have worked with them in the past year to design 10 new
saris each giving us 150 new saris designs which have not been created before in
natural block printing,dyeing, weaving, batik, shibori and others. The colourways,
blocks and combinations are theme based, some are natural dyed, some are revivals of
decades old blocks and geometric explorations. All the known masters have worked
to offer a rare never-before attempted treat for sari lovers.
2) Launch of book - The Craft Skills of India
Release of an e-book (temporarily, and a printed publication later), offering a huge
documentation of 21 art , craft and textiles skillsof India ,covering over 100 styles
After our Craft Atlas of India and the vast range of artistic maps, and the Akshara
project exhibit book this is the next major documentation work of the Dastkari Haat
Samiti to show that ‘craft’ is actually a skill, not a product, and the skill can be
applied in a multiple number of ways. This book will be richly illustrated offering
ideas for skill application in our sector in a variety of other professions.
3) Relaunch of dastkarihaat.org
The announcement of a fully revised and re-energised website dastkarihaat.org that
not only reveals our 35 years of work, but the entire atmosphere of our crafts bazaars,
with videos, skill demonstrations and very short snippets of crafts persons speaking.
4) Launch announcement of forthcoming dastkarihaat.com
Announcement of the creation of a separate shopping website where the Dastkari
Haat Samiti’s over 200 products exclusively designed with its artisan and artist
members during its multiple formal and informal projects over the years will be
offered to customers.
5) Launch of the book titled The Language of Indian Graphic Design
We are launching a book written in collaboration by Jaya Jaitly, President, Dastkari
Haat Samiti and Dimple Bahl, Faculty Head, Dept of Graphic Design, National
Institute of Fashion Technology. This book delves into the original ancient concepts
and philosophies that unconsciously guide graphic design in folk art and craft and also
scripts and calligraphy. Graphic Design in the western countries grow out of purely
technical concepts whereas in India spiritual thought sustains our creative
expressions. It will be the first book of its kind
6) The 2021 Annual Crafts Bazaar
We are inviting 170 arts, crafts and textile practitioners who are all members of our Samiti to
display and sell their work with a prayer and a hope that customers will buy generously and
welcome them back to the real rather than virtual world.
SOME SPECIAL CRAFTS-Yali-Kodiyala Sarees and brown cotton from Karnataka,
Paintings based on Covid-19, shell and wood from West Bengal, Miniature emboss painting
To keep expenses down we may be slightly subdued, without our usual foreign crafts persons
component at a special design workshop due to Covid restrictions and concerns.
Celebrate the coming of warmth and the vaccine and let us usher in normal life together.