VAWAA (Vacation With An Artist), an excitingly unique travel start-up offers you an artistic experience of a lifetime. Make a puppet, weave a mandala, paint the streets, create a bamboo bicycle, cook up a healing Malay meal, dance away the Anatolian way, write your first book or make music…. on your next vacation!

Ditch that upcoming touristy holiday plan if you have one and plan your next, much awaited getaway with an artist. VAWAA has created a network of artists worldwide – Asia, Europe, South America – and offers you to take a vacation with them.

Learn In-house

As you are vacationing, you get to learn the art of the respective artist, in their own work-space. So, choose from a century-old house in the forests with a pet donkey to sculpt, a nature reserve on an island to weave or a home studio amidst the mountains and Arashiyama bamboo groves for calligraphy among other quaint, naturalistic settings.

Discover new cultures

Also, as some of these arts are indigenous to the place the artists belong to, you end up discovering new traditions, new inspirations, new history, new lifestyles…. basically a whole new world through the artist and his art. VAWAA aims to give one the thrill of living like a local in their holiday spot. To go beyond the ‘touch’ of technology and experience getting dirty with soil, stones, clay, cloth, wood and the likes of nature.

Humble beginnings

The person behind an initiative like this has to be a passionate traveler. And Geetika Agrawal sure is! It’s not just about travelling for this New York based designer. It’s about ‘immersing in the local culture, making things with her hands and drawing inspiration by learning something new’ while she is being a nomad. Having spent summer vacations with local artisans in Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu during her college days, Geetika wanted to create a platform for others with similar interests. Globetrotting to 12 countries in 12 months, discovering and roping in local artists, she founded VAWAA in 2015.

Tale of two artists

When New Yorker Alberto Botero met Uruguay based Francisco Lapetina for a studio session in the latter’s work-space in Montevideo, there was music in the air. The five days spent together culminated in a multidisciplinary album with five original songs. A mix and match of various experimental electronic styles, the music album ‘Resistance’ has been one of the most successful artistic collaborations through VAWAA.

The Indian Connection

Vijay Sharma

Book an artistic rendezvous with Vijay Sharma and head to Bengaluru to make a bamboo bicycle. This furniture designer and carpenter wears many hats. Hence, along with helping you to create a tailor-made bicycle, Sharma can also give you a lesson or two on urban farming and making your own craft beer. 

Jigisha Unnu

Learn the art of felting with textile designer Jigisha Unnu in Ahmedabad. Make felt rugs and design custom throws and scarves with a holistic exposure to the world of wool and fibres. The highlight being artisan studio visits in the old city of Ahmedabad, a textile hub.

Thomas Louis

Make simple and organic ceramics using traditional Indian techniques with Thomas. One of India’s finest ceramist, sculptor, and painter who traces his love for clay to a childhood spent playing with mud during monsoon. From massive murals to tableware to musical instruments, all of Thomas’ work draw inspiration from nature and the cultural diversity of his hometown, Goa.

Adrenaline rush already?

Just book a studio session with an artist then and you are good to go. The studio sessions last from a few days to a few weeks depending on the amount of time required and given by the vacationer to learn a particular art form. After which you are free to explore the place either by yourself or even better, with the artist. Leave behind your social media updates. Pump yourself up with creative juices and fill your vacation with unadulterated novelty!

Source for All Images: VAWAA

About The Author

Arwa Janjali

Arwa is a foodie and a wanderlust junkie. When she is not pretending to work, she is pretending to cook. Her hobby in the kitchen comes with its fair share of disasters, which she quietly gulps down without much ado. Amazingly, she is quick to gather enough motivation to whip up the next culinary calamity.

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