[Editor's Note: This is the second installment from guest blogger Isabel Rutherfurd, who is a volunteer teacher at Shanti Bhavan.]
Traditional Indian art made its way to center stage this week at Shanti Bhavan. I had the pleasure of leading the fourth and fifth grade classes in the creation of a customized rangoli in the school’s courtyard. Rangoli is a traditional folk art made from colored sand or rice flour and is thought to bring good luck. Shanti Bhavan students learned some of these symmetrical patterns and put their skills to good use, creating the largest rangoli the school has ever seen.
Each rangoli design is brightly colored and usually located in doorways, courtyards, and other sacred areas. Because of the good energy these designs bring a household, rangoli designs are essential to the presentation of any household. Each rangoli pattern is passed down from mother to daughter and drawn each morning, just after the sun rises. While students at Shanti Bhavan learned these designs from their teachers, their designs maintain authenticity and bring excitement and color to the campus!
Note from Aishwarya: I’m very impressed with how elaborate and intricate these designs are! I remember making rangoli designs for Diwali with my mother when I was a kid. (Re-purposing leftover sand from my Sand Art kits, the American version of rangoli!) The students at Shanti Bhavan did a great job, don’t you think?