Summer Workshop 2022

Day 1 – Understanding Bamboo

Hello all! We are back with another set of exciting explorations in bamboo. I am Devashree Jadeja , 2021 batch furniture design student at NID helping coordinate the workshop with Pravinsinh Solanki our Mentor. Pravin’ s love for bamboo began in 2014 when he travelled to Nagaland and since then there’s no looking back. He has conducted many workshops, mentored graduation projects and won numerous awards for his amazing designs in Bamboo.

The workshop was organized by CEP (Continuing Education Program) at NID during 18 to 22 July ‘2022. Milanbhai was a great help organizing and coordinating the whole workshop throughout the five days. Additionally Subrata Sarkar a master craftsman and Navneetbhai Mistry a skilled carpenter were there to guide the students.

So Summer Workshop 2022 was another enthusiastic batch of students across the country, eager to explore the plethora of possibilities with this material.

Young bamboo enthusiasts of Summer Workshop 2022

We began with a slightly rainy morning and a warm cup of tea near the ICIC (International Center for Indian Crafts) workshop and set up our presentation in the Design Gallery. The presentation was a quick introduction to bamboo, its various species in India, their scientific nomenclature and properties. Further there was a brief glimpse of what are various processes of treating the material and various methods of preservation as well as drying.

Pravin briefly equipping students with the technical nomenclature around bamboo

So then we walked all the way amongst the bright NID greens near the faculty residences to actually see the bamboo shrubs. Here everyone could really identify the various components we discussed in the presentation earlier and could think of the utility each part could have. We also looked at the growth cycle of bamboo and tall they quickly grow within a short span.

Participant feeling the texture of a bamboo sheath
Pravin explaining the growth cycle of bamboo

We walked back to the bamboo workshop then, and had a quick introduction to what are the actual possibilities in bamboo products through the examples of classic furniture and objects by M. P Ranjan and Gajanand Upadhyay. The students said it was actually insightful as they had not thought about ideating with each component into an actual product.

Pravin interacting with all on the possibilities of Bamboo splits.

So after a short look through at bamboo products we had arranged an introduction to the tools and techniques in bamboo. So Subrata bhai and Navneet bhai the master craftsmen from workshop were also helping orient the students in the workshop through their expertise.

Introduction to bamboo tools

So during one of the discussion, someone asked up to what percentage can a person use the components of bamboo, so to answer this Pravin did a small presentation on how bamboo is used from cradle to coffin and each of its parts serve a purpose whether it be its shoots that can be pickled and eaten or its slivers that aid in weaving or its sections that make furniture and houses. The presentation was titled ‘Living with Bamboo’ and was a foray into the lives of people in Nagaland where their houses, cooking utensils, food and dustbins were all made out of bamboo. This encouraged everyone to think of stretching the potential of a material to its optimum.

We had a nice hearty lunch of paneer, warm roti and dal-rice in the campus and resumed work at 2 PM.

The next task for all students was to explore cutting bamboo splits with the cutting knives and it was so much fun to see each one giving their best to cut a perfect split.

First hand experiences of cutting bamboo manually
Subrataji demonstrating to cut hollow bamboo sections on the Radial Miter saw

All were so eager to try their hands on the cutting machine (Miter saw) and one by one we began the process of ideating a sound amplifier and restricting it to a definite size to hold the phone.

Subrata and Vaishnavi helping Dhriti to cut hollow section
Angular cutting in Radial Miter saw

Meanwhile students were also exploring the radial miter saw to be able to cut the bamboo sections at specific degrees.

Finally we ended day 1 on a sweet note of watermelon juice and snacks:)

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