Laila Tyabji is a craft designer, writer, and Chairperson of DASTKAR, the craft NGO she helped found. Laila has been working with grassroots artisans all over India for over four decades.
Many of her most rewarding projects involve creating new livelihood avenues through craft for pastoral & marginalised rural communities – bonded labour in Bihar, displaced villages in Ranthambhore, tribals in Orissa and Karnataka, victims of insurgency in Kashmir and, most recently, craftspeople decimated by the Covid pandemic and subsequent lockdowns…
Laila studied art in Baroda & Japan, & has worked as a freelance designer in textiles, graphics, interiors , and the theatre.
She writes regularly on craft, design, development and social issues.
She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Padma Shri in 2012 for her work in the craft sector, and was the first Asian to receive the AID TO ARTISANS Preservation of Craft Award in Néw York in 2003.“