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India >  Rangoli at school, 2008

These photographs show the wonderful rangoli art by children at Sardar Patel Vidyalaya in New Delhi. 'Vidyalaya' means school in Hindi. Every year, a few days before Diwali, the school holds a rangoli competition. The children work in groups to make rangoil throughout the school: in the hall, outside classrooms, in the verandahs, and they win awards for different aspects of their work.

The older children are asked to base their designs on a particular theme and this year the theme was 'Identity'. These pictures show work by children in years 9, 10, 11 and 12. They used a variety of materials, such as clay, mirrors, coloured sawdust, sand, paints, glass bangles, foil, coloured marble chips, tiles, string and flowers.

We revisited the school in 2010 and took some more pictures. See them on this page.

Click on the photograph to enlarge. Use the arrows in the top right-hand corner to view a slide show.

 

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1. The school entrance
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2. The children had worked in groups to plan their designs and collect the materials. On Rangoli day they had an hour and a half to complete their pictures.
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3. The children also displayed a piece of writing which explained how their Rangoli related to the theme of 'Identity'.
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5. '.. our constantly evolving and transforming identities'
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6. A flame
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16. A peacock made on glass with clay and broken glass bangles. The glass is resting on pots above clay sections filled with coloured water. The children wrote, '...on the surface everthing seems uniform, the colours merge to form one entity, but beneath it, in the depths, we are all different.'
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17. '...our Rangoli is about women who want to break loose from the shackles of tradition and fly with the clouds'
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18. The wheel of life - made with coloured marble chips.
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24. On gender identities - '...with changing traditions and ideas these identities no longer remain as rigid as they once were .. stereotypical colours no longer act as a barrier.'
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Rangoli animation
Making a pattern
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