Vastrakala Craft Residency

Residency brief

For 30 years, Vastrakala has been designing and making high-quality hand embroidery. As descendants of the master craftsmen serving the Nawabs of the Deccan over several centuries, these embroiderer craftspeople are the inheritors of a strong heritage seeped in traditional and millennia-old techniques that they continue to pass down from one generation to the next. Initially dedicated to embroideries for interiors, Vastrakala’s repertoire progressively extended to fine embroidery for fashion as the company partnered with Lesage Paris. Both maisons have been united by the same passion, exchanging, meeting and bringing together their skills of excellence.

Transmission has always been at the heart of Vastrakala’s mission, whether it is in enabling new generations of embroiderers to perpetuate their heritage in and around the villages where they live, or in the exchanges of embroidery know-hows between France and India, two countries with a centuries-old embroidery tradition. Jean-Francois Lesage, the artistic director for the decoration activity will be mentor of the residency, hosting the artist in his own studio during their stay. The resident will benefit from this special support, while learning from the ancestral techniques of Vastrakala’s craftsmen.

  • Thematic focus Arts & Crafts (textile, embroidery)
  • LocationGudapakkam Village (Tamil Nadu)
  • Dates October 2023
  • Length of stay 1 month

Our Space

Gudapakkam Village, near Chennai (Tamil Nadu)

Vastrakala Embroidery Atelier is located on the outskirts of Chennai, in the state of Tamil Nadu, close to Sriperumbudur, the ancestral home of Vastrakala’s craftsmen.

Our Laureates

Victoire de Brantes Designer

By exploring the archives and traditional techniques of the Atelier Vastrakala, I intend to question and redefine the role of ornamentation today, combining heritage with innovative materials. The objective is to create a new form of embroidery that integrates into our interiors, providing both functionality and beauty.

VSB (Victoire de Brantes) is a multidisciplinary French designer based between Paris and Provence. She lived and studied in India, Italy and the Netherlands, where she graduated from the Humanity and Wellbeing department of the Eindhoven Design Academy in 2022. VSB is driven by a passion for materials and colours as a mean of connecting with our everyday environment. VSB has created collaborative protocols with different artisan communities, using design as a tool for dialogue and empowerment. She seeks to understand the singular context around specific colours and materials, always emphasising the sensory tangibility of the object. VSB's approach to design combines material research with poetic storytelling to bring her concepts to life.