Kaantha, the poor mans blanket from Bengal is a needle and thread wonder. It is extraordinary not only because of its stunning texture, rhythm of colors and curious motifs but also because it represents one of the earliest and most extraordinary means of recycling old and discarded fragments of cloth through embroidery.
Padmaja works to revive, rediscover a number of lost stitches, borders and motifs by studying and documenting a large number of old kaanthas. She uses the kaantha style and stitches to render contemporary motifs and stories from her own world. Several important museums including the V&A in London has shown interest in her product developments with kaantha. Her work has been showcased in independent shows and galleries in US, UK, Japan and Portugal.
2011 INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF QUILTS, BIRMINGHAM, UK
2010 IZUMO QUILT MUSEUM, JAPAN
2009 INTERNATIONAL QUILT FESTIVAL AT YOKOHAMA, JAPAN
Independent gallery featuring 50 of her kaantha work.
2009 EXPERIMENTA DESIGN, LISBON
An international biennale dedicated to design, architecture and contemporary culture.
2007 International Quilt Festival, Birmingham
THE BEST TEXTILE CREATION – GRAND PRIX
2007 London design festival
NEW WORLD DESIGN
2005 Sui-Dhaga International conference hosted by UNESCO, New Delhi
Presented a paper on the socio-cultural context of kaantha in Bengal.