Kagitha sirpi J.Ramesh India
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A Brief Write-up about Myself and on my Contribution to the field of Art through ‘Kirigami’ !

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My Name is J.Ramesh, aged 40, coming from a poor family and I reside in Chennai, Tamilnadu.

In terms of literacy; I have studied only upto Tenth Standard and I am a Mason by Profession.

I know only Tamil and hence I have asked somebody to do this write-up for me in English, by me telling the points to be contained in it and by clearly explaining in Tamil to the writer of it !

I have been practicing a seemingly peculiar art form of making Decorative Designs out of colour papers for over twenty years, thanks to my aesthetic sense and my inherent creative pursuit.

I initially did it out of my own genuine interest and innate passion for doing this sort of art work, mainly for decorating some of the local shops on their asking, especially during festival times.

And this; I started doing, very ironically and strangely, even without me knowing that what I am performing at my home is actually an art form of Japan called ‘Kirigami’, to my wonderment.

Frankly, I have not learnt it from anyone and I am virtually a self taught artiste of an altogether different genre and that too in a foreign art form; even without knowing anything about it at all.

Yes, I began practicing this unique work of art by merely folding and cutting sheets of paper in different angles using scissors, and more importantly without using any pencil or pen, or even without any diagram or stencil pressing, and purely out of my own imagination and creativity.

I have till date made thousands of such art pieces, which has now really gone past 7,000 and is purported to be almost a World Record for all practical purposes, which even any Japanese National cannot boast of or claim to have as of now, thereby making me stand out from the ordinary and literally a perfectly fit candidate for securing an entry into the coveted Guinness Book of World Records, to be precise, leave alone the other Books of Records in this World !

I have formally declared about some of these achievements of mine through the local Print Media including Television Channels and they all popularly refer to me as ‘Kagitha Sirpi’, which in Tamil Language means ‘Paper Sculptor’ and have proved my pioneering contribution to ‘Kirigami’ time and again; which is truly gratifying to mine and yet I have miles to go onward !

I have not only appeared in several Television Programmes telecast by Jaya TV, Vasanth TV, Kalaignar TV, Tamizhan TV, etcetera, but have also been covered and reported in many among the Print Media like The Hindu, Indian Express, Dina Thanthi, Dina Malar, Dina Mani, Dina Karan, Ladies Special, Makkal Kural,Theekathir Newspaper and many others of repute and standard, to say the least.

I am of the firm opinion and view point that there will not be any famine for good designs vide pursuing this art form, more so because this art form ‘Kirigami’ is almost like an ocean which will not go dry at all at any time, as the possibilities of churning out millions of artistic designs and patterns are practically endless and is limited only by the human thought and thinking as such.

It is a very simple art indeed but at the same time it is intricate enough to produce a wide variety of complex designs and patterns which is a moot point that is needless to be overemphasized.

The specialty of Kirigami is that it is really an amalgam of many other art forms and is virtually an integration of many artistic types, including sculpting, collage, illustration, and the like.

By doing this art work our Intellect gets developed and sharpened substantially and improves one’s imagination, and interestingly when seen from different angles one tends to perceive different images that are lying, hiding or rather disguised within a Kirigami piece of art work.

In fact, towards that end, I have so far taught Kirigami to over 10,000 students through the multitude of Training sessions conducted by me and received plenty of appreciation letters, Certificates, Cash Awards and other encomiums from the hosting Educational Institutions.

These are besides me participating in several Government sponsored functions, Trade Fairs and received a plethora of appreciations and certificates from the concerned authorities, notable among them being the one given recently by the truly prestigious Tamil Nadu Eyal Isai Nataka Manram and Central Footwear Training Institute, Chennai, which I consider as a real honour.

I am also of the humble view that this art form must be taught in all the Schools and Colleges and also taken up by various Social Forums and Non Governmental Organizations, as it is very easy to learn and practice, besides being inexpensive to pursue even as a hobby by anyone.

That is to say, if taught systematically and methodically even to the Handicapped folks, it can turn out to be an excellent source of revenue for them, with very little or no investment made by them, say by virtue of making and supplying such handcrafted decorative materials for various celebrations both in the households as well as in the Offices all over, to say the bare minimum.

More specifically, as a probable and worthy line extension of this idea and thought process, these Kirigami designs can find place in the overall fine art of designing of not only fabrics and garments but also for Tiles and other utility items, thus the application of this nice art in various media formats is very much a possibility and the scope for which is immense and enormous.

I have over the years participated in several Art Exhibitions and conducted many Training Programmes; the pace of which has certainly increased in recent times, thanks to the general awareness about Kirigami being made available by the local media to whom I am grateful.

Notable among them is the one mega event in which I have participated as part of the Sixtieth Anniversary of Indo Japan Diplomatic Relationship organized by the Consulate General of Japan, ABK-AOTS DOSOKAI, Tamil Nadu Centre, and Tamil Nadu Chapter of Nippon India Trade and Industry, in March 2012, wherein I not only held an Exhibition on my large Kirigami collections, but also did a Demonstration cum Training Programme in that memorable occasion.

Even the Tamil Nadu Government has now recognized this as a Handicraft, besides granting the sanction to set up even an Art Foundation for Kirigami, which ofcourse is yet to take shape on the desired lines, although Kirigami is presently being treated as an activity under the category of Cottage Industry cum Craftwork and is recognized so by the State Government.

To save this art from from dying or perishing, I wish and appeal that the Government of India takes steps to support it, say by even making it as a part time vocational class in every school.

I do have a simple website for this; which comes first if any Google Search is done by using the words ‘Kirigami Ramesh’ or ‘Kagitha Sirpi’, and I can be contacted by dialing +919841240152 (Chennai based Cell Number) and my E-Mail ID is kagithasirpiindia@gmail.com - Jai Hind !

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