Waxing eloquent on fabric with Batik
Meet - Geeta and Mohan Mayenkar
Batik is the art of creating designs on fabric using wax as a dye resist. Repeated waxing and dyeing of the fabric ultimately creates unique, exquisite designs on fabric. This is an art that has been practiced in various parts of India for centuries.
Geeta and Mohan Mayenkar – the husband wife duo are the only artist couple in Goa creating batik in an inimitable style, each one a unique painting.
Geeta’s tryst with this art began with her enrolling for the first training course in Batik conducted by the State Design Training Centre way back in 1981. She thereafter was taken on as a training resource person for the Rural Development Agency and conducted Batik training sessions in various parts of the state for over ten years.
It was while attending her training at the Design Centre that she met Mohan Mayenkar. Mohan a Fine Arts graduate of the first batch of the Goa College of Art, was a designer at the Centre. He specialised in painting and watercolours are his favourite medium.
The two then married in 1983
This alliance provided the ingredients for developing a unique painting style of Batik. Mohan sketched the various images and scenes on fabric, which Geeta then converted to batik using wax and dyes.
Their designs initially had scenes of Goa that included temples, churches and places of tourist interest like Dona Paula. Their artistic combination now focuses on traditional Goan themes with figures like fisherwomen, toddy tapper, scenes at the village well, lady carrying water pots and other such iconic images. Their batik work makes ideal wall hangings and other utility items like cushion covers and table mats and runners.
They have exhibited their batik at various crafts exhibitions around the country that includes the well known annual Surajkhand Crafts Fair, Pragati Maidan at New Delhi, Ladakh festival and other crafts festivals in the country.
Geeta has won several awards for her artistic batik creations that includes the Kalanidhi Award from the Harayana Tourism Department for their work displayed at the Surajkhand Crafts Festival and has bagged awards twice at the Goa State Arts Exhibitions held at the Kala Academy, Panaji.
Consequent to Mohan’s retirement from the State Design Centre they have relocated to Mohan’s ancestral home in our neighbourhood.
Mohan now continues with his expressions with water color paintings and sketches and provides designs for Geeta to convert to batik fabric.
This artistic couple continue to wax eloquent with batik.