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Drawing Out the Gods: Ritualistic drawings (kalams) and performative acts (Ayappan theyyattu) in traditional Temple Arts of Kerala

Temple Arts in Kerala
Thursday, May 19, 2022, 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm

Among the numerous centuries-old traditional rituals in Hindu temples of Kerala, the art of ritualistic drawings (Kalams) in the worship of Mother Goddesses (Bhardakali) and Lord Ayyappan in the religious art form of AyappanTtheyyattu brings forth the interstices between ritual as art, mythology, and performance in Kerala temples. The creation of spaces of divinity through these intricate and colorful drawings (Kalams), the contestations between the nature of these practices as folk art or traditional temple ritual forms performed in a religious space offer insights into debates about performative practices in Hindu temples in contemporary Kerala.

Sanjay Kumar is a Senior Lecturer at the CEU Center for Academic Writing. He did his Ph.D. in Indian urban theatre at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi. He works on the theatrical and performative traditions in Kerala, his home state in India and recently focuses on the adaptations of Shakespeare in Kathakali and Theyyam, the classical and folk dance-drama forms of Kerala. Sanjay is also a member of the Performance, Religion, and Spirituality Working Group of the International Federation of Theatre Research (IFTR). He has presented his research at various international conferences on Indian theatre, cinema, and Cinematic Adaptations of Shakespeare in India.


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Meeting ID: 919 3586 9090
Passcode: 858717