Renuka paints with a kalam, in stillness yet creating motion, a dance of the undulating trees with a thousand little steps and details. Forever in present, she travels in time, paying tribute to the many unknown artisans, their heritage resonating within her.
Chintz originated as a hand painted, mordant and resist-dyed patterned cotton cloth from India. It was made for domestic markets and exported to Southeast Asia and West Asia as far back as the fifth century AD and finally to Europe and onward to the Americas in the seventeenth century.
Chintz is proof of a dialogue in history, a conversation between cultures across continents that forever globalized textile design. A conversation that was interpreted correctly and sometimes misinterpreted resulting in something exotic to both sides. One can still see a shout or a whisper of it today.
The complexity involved in making chintz and the lost art of fine resist are some of the reasons that led Renuka to work with chintz; to fulfil her need to work with her hands, and her desire to learn, to experiment, to discover.