Each stone, beautiful in itself carries a story. Author, poet and artist, Randhir Khare who feels that stones represent pieces of memory…of places, feelings, experiences collects stones from his many travels. Round pebbles glistening in the bed of rivers, smooth flat granite slivers tucked into a pile of stones by the wayside, the striped stones of Ladakh, the chunks of onyx littering the forest floors of Bhimashankar, tears of cold lava on the slopes of the volcano Mount Merapi, the beautiful bloodstones in the Narmada’s shallow pools, the weird and wonderful stones on the bed of Khalla Nadi in Kutch…and numerous others that he has come upon and have seemed to call out to him to be picked up make up his collection.
He has been using these stones since eight years in creative workshops for children between the ages of six and nine years. They become playthings, inspiration for the building of characters in stories, colours and forms for individual and community art, music makers, the starting points for dramatic scripts and performances.
Mr. Khare conducted a Stones Workshop at Gyaan Adab centre from May 6 to May 10, 2014, where children got to experience the magic of stones. The stones became powerful therapeutic and creative tools, helping children, become expressive and articulate. The experience of stones was used to connect with the others and the world around them. The children used stones to talk about themselves, their particular situations and their uncertainties, dreams, aspirations.
The children creatively expressed themselves through art, music and dance.
At the end of the workshop they put together a small skit about stones for their parents. The children were given a certificate of participation and their joy knew no bounds when they were presented with a special stone as a souvenir. A stone they could take home, befriend, and care for – a stone to keep them creatively active.