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  • Making Art a utility product, an inspirational journey of an Artpreneur, Meghna of Hastha

    Published on March 17, 2021

    Hyderabad:Meghna is an artist with a difference. Even while working with global MNC as senior HR professional, the artist in her was constantly reminding her that something else was in store for her. Finally, after 17 years as a corporate executive, listening to her inner voice, she resigned and set up Hastha.

    Since then, Meghna has been pursuing her Artpreneurship. She has set up her own startup Hastha (means hand), handcrafted table lamps.

    Hastha works with traditional Indian art forms. Conventionally, art is used as a decorative purpose. Specialty of table lamps made by Hastha is to enhance the utility of the art form, says Meghna. 

    “We use a combination of silk and handmade paper. The front panel of the lamp is made with leather and a painting on it. The medium for the sides is either silk or handmade paper. We will try and incorporate more Indian Art forms soon. The traditional paintings are done by the artists and the rest of the craftwork is done by me” Meghna explained.

    Meghna believes that Art can flourish if it is fused with daily, household utility. Thus, was born Hastha Artistic Table Lamps. Her uniquely beautiful designer table lamps have become talk of her relatives, the circle of friends, neighbours, former colleagues. Now the entire city knows. 

    She exhibited her unique products at a recently concluded Business Women Expo organized by Hitex and COWE jointly and held at Hitex

    She makes handcrafted lamps with traditional art to light up home not just with light but with art. And the good thing about these lamps is that they are lamps with a unique purpose. And the purpose is to make the art shine even in the darkness. The purpose is to make the art utilised in day-to-day life so that it is patronised to make it flourish. And it helps to promote the dying art, she says. 

    The lamps come in 4 different art forms. The lampshades are hand-painted. They are made up of good art forms such as Madhubani, Tholu Bommalu, Patachitra and Kalamkari and more.

    Madhubani art is a style of painting, practised in India. Madhubani painting is done with a variety of tools, including fingers, twigs, brushes, nib-pens, and matchsticks and using natural dyes and pigments

    Tholu Bommalu is a shadow puppet theatre tradition of Andhra Pradesh passed through villages entertaining people. 

    Patachitra is a traditional, cloth-based scroll painting, based in the eastern Indian states of Odisha and West Bengal. Patachitra art form is known for its intricate details as well as mythological narratives and folktales inscribed in it.

    My idea is to increase the utility of art form. We may not use table lamps during the day. It will remain as a small piece of art. The night when switched on it is illuminated and again the art form is projected, says Meghna. 

    Art forms are age-old. But bringing Patachitra art or any other art form in the form of a table lamp is unique. I have not seen anywhere such an experiment. There is a lot of scope for designer innovation, tells Meghna.

    My journey of one and half years was tough. But there was a lot of encouragement. People liked the idea. It gives a lot of satisfaction. Though I am not earning as much as I used to from my corporate job, it gives a lot of satisfaction, adds Meghana, mother of a ten-year-old daughter. 

    Today e-commerce being a well-accepted medium to create access for ones products, marketing is not at all difficult she says. She is planning to go online in the next couple of months. 

    This is much better than my job in terms of work-life balance, she says. And claims that she enjoys full support from her family. 

    Leaving a highly fetching job was not easy. But Meghna’s heart was in the Art. She has been very passionate about it. One year since she embarked on Artpreneurship, the journey was not that easy. The challenges she faced during the last one-year do not seem big in front of the great satisfaction she derives from her new journey. 

    Every corner in the house, in the office has a table. And every table needs a lamp. Why not have an artistic lamp, that not only aesthetically looks good but also promotes an age-old art.