Traditional ajrakh block printing
Ruth Clifford’s paper showed the development of the traditional ajrakh block printing in India for contemporary markets. She used an anthropological approach to show how in a rapidly changing country, which is growing economically, the artisans were applying their craft. The judges were particularly impressed with her use of new primary sources, which she had gathered through going to India. Ruth’s findings also showed that because of improved educational facilities, the artisans were growing in confidence and producing new and exciting designs to suit the contemporary markets. The Textile Society Critical Writing Award will go towards further research in India allowing her to build a rich collection of data.