This map took me all of November to make; parts of it still needs filling in. It will complete itself in time. I gave it a rest by end November as the paper I was drawing on given the multiple folding, drawing, erasing, redrawing, colouring and handling over a month was beginning to make the whole sheet fall apart. It is currently taped panel for panel at the back along the fold lines and now stands up against my studio wall. A closer look will show a coffee cup ring from my beloved beverage holder as it accompanied my map sketching study times. This particular iteration is the 5th or 6th attempt in getting the positions and proportions right. I tossed out 3 as they were incorrect and messy. I lost 2 of the maps and close directions notes I had – one fell out of my pocket on our ride back from Marakkanam; the other was catalogued away into an unidentifiable location somewhere within the walls of my studio during one of my most recent cataloguing and reorganising bouts. I observe I go through such phases at least thrice a year. My next cataloging session will hopefully unearth Map Itrn. 2 while I hope Map Itrn.1 (if it hasn’t disintegrated into the biome it was dropped in already) offers direction to water bodies around the area to whomsoever may find it.
Note: I have not included the Vettuvankeni & Pallikarnai waterbodies in this map as I thought it best to make a separate map of them.
The 12 Waterbodies on this Map:
- The Kuyilapalayam Thamarai Kulam
- The 5 home made ponds of Adishakti
- The Ustheri Lake aka Oussudu Lake
- The Renganathapuram Thamarai Kulam
- The Renganathapuram Thazhampoo – Ambal Kulam
- Koonimedu Aiyanaar Koil Manikulai Kulam
- Koonimedu Vinayagar Koil Thamarai Kulam
- Keezhpaettai Ambal Kulam
- Keezhapaettai Manikulai Kulam
- The Kaliveli
- The Kanthadu Reserve Forest – Paddy Pond
- The Kanthadu Reserve Forest – Forest Pond
My sincere thanks to Vinobha Nathan for giving his energy and enthusiasm towards the building of this book.
The need is to: make a book, meet children – make a children’s picture book in collaboration and consultation with children – exploring ideas of transition of form, matter and silence across time if it interests them – use language and typography, paper and light and show these movements – continue my study on elements in flow – be quiet – sit, see, listen by a lily pond together by night till day.
I was in the city for the Art Bengaluru 2015 where I had a chance to show my first ideas for long images with the Flatland Scrolls printed on canvas. During this trip I had set aside some money to invest in paper and inks; with it I went to Bhaskar Arts Centre in CKP where they make sketchbooks in-house. I like these kind of books made by stationers in their workshops as they are simple and each stationer has a specific set of papers and forms of books that they produce.
Post the Art Bengaluru 2015 opening night two friends came back with me to my hotel room and we had a nice after party. We had much to say, catch up and consume. After they went to sleep I was still up since I’m mostly on night shifts, so I took my ciggies and went to the balcony with a fresh sketchbook. After a few pages of drawing the first sketches of the lily sequence with its ambience happened. It struck me as having potential to be a seed that could engage the many things that are influencing and shaping my life and practice at this point towards a productive and meaningful end.
I decided I would apply for an IFA Grant in 2012 because I wanted time and resources to study. Then I started thinking about what such a grant would allow me to study closely. I went about looking through my works and ideas to identify correctly what I was studying at that point and which areas of it I wanted to focus on over a long period of time consistently; especially since I have multiple interests and disciplines which I seek from. I knew I needed to make a book. After a few years of jotting scribbles and notes these were the first set of sketches that gave me the strong feeling that I had something solid. I set up a meeting with Shubham Roy Choudhury of IFA (Programme Executive: Arts Practice) and pitched the idea of a picture book to him. I explained to him the work I was used to doing as an illustrator and the discoveries I was making as an artist. He spoke about what IFA did and how it worked. I came away promising a proposal. Using these sketches as a seed thought I developed a proposal for a picture book. Post periodic reviews of it in development with the counsel of IFA I finally submitted my grant application for Arts Practice in September 2016. The grant came through in February 2017.