Friday, 24 February 2012

Elephant posse

Check out these cool elephants hanging out at Viakerala, thekkady.
Once you get to know them, you're sure to be friends for life.
Did you know that an elephant's memory is ever lasting?

Thursday, 23 February 2012

hand woven + hand made = hand bag

Via Kerala is seeking to conserve creative traditions in a number of ways.  By experimenting with and re-working hand-crafted designs, by utilizing local craftsmen and women to produce our designs, and by using locally hand-made fabrics within our designs, where possible. Skills such as needlework, weaving and basket weaving are commonly found throughout the state. By exploring and improving designs, we are attempting to create more aesthetically appealing, unique products that also serve a practical function, help raise awareness of our local crafts, and keep these practices thriving. Our reversible bags made with locally woven fabrics are proving very popular.

Text by Leyla Temiz. Photographs by Deepthi.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Twisting Type, Twisting Tongue

A beautifully curly script, Malayalam’s loopy curves co-incidentally symbolise the movements the tongue makes during pronunciation, and some characters are ever so hard for a non-native to pronounce. In some instances Malayalam takes your tongue to places it’s never been before! 
 At Viakerala, we have been researching on local hand-painted signs, and working on typographic designs that explore the Malayalam script and language, in a bid to bring fresh and exciting Malayalam-based typography and design to the attention of travelers and local young ‘mallus’ who may have moved to foreign tongues. 
Photographs & text by Leyla Temiz.
If you have some crazy cool malayalam typography that you dont mind sharing, drop us a note here, or email us.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Wild 5 FIve - the heroes of Periyar

It goes without saying that the location inspired the ‘Wild 5 Five’ range of awareness accessories. Featuring 5 iconic endemic species, diverse in their appearance and behaviour, Wild 5 Five is designed to raise awareness of the Periyar forest and its precious inhabitants. If you are in Thekkady, take some time out to get familiar with the Asian Elephant, Bengal Tiger, Nilgiri Tahr, Lion tailed Macaque & the state bird of Kerala, the Great Indian Pied Hornbil.
Wild 5 Five - the champions of Periyar!

Photographs & text by Leyla Temiz

Monday, 20 February 2012

Namaskaram, this way in

The fact that the Viakerala store and the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary lie in the same corner of the world is also representative of the more obscure similarities between the two initiatives. In the same way conservationists in national parks seek to protect, research, sustain, and promote wildlife and the interest surrounding it, the Via Kerala team is working hard to document, conserve and rejuvenate the traditional crafts and language of Kerala, through exploration, design and promotion.

 Photographs & text by Leyla Temiz.

official, officially, finally

After so much planning and test runs, the Viakerala shop finally opens on Feb 5, 2012.  Yes the Kerala villaku made an appearance to honor the moment. (gave the designers some time to contemplate a new interpretation for the traditional lamp!)

Photography by Milo Inman

Deputy director Sanjayan Kumar, from Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary and Dr. Veeramani (who has been kind enough to be our research hotline for Wild5Five) joined us for a hot cuppa and some kappa! What started as an evening of dialogue has incredible possibility for knowledge exchange and a larger awareness model.