For those keen to follow and understand the artistic heritage during their visits to Kerala, it would be an ideal choice to drop in at The Kerala Folklore Academy, located at Chirakkal in Kannur, the northern district of Kerala.
Established in 1995, welfare of the folk artistes is the prime concern of the academy. Set up by the Government of Kerala, the academy, while ensuring the welfare of folk artistes also strives for reviving, preserving and promoting the rich folk art traditions of Kerala. The academy is located by the side of the beautiful Chirakkal Lake, which is reputedly the second largest of its kind in Asia.
The academy functions from traditionally built structure called nalukettu and presently houses a folklore library, a museum and a publication department, besides the administrative departments.
The library at The Kerala Folklore Academy features over 1000 volumes on the folk art traditions of Kerala and is one of the largest of its kind and a popular haunt of scholars and researchers in the field.
And checking out the museum at the academy, one would find a collection of over 300 precious objects of folk art, including life-size replicas of various theyyams and patayani, folk and tribal musical and percussion instruments, farm implements and weapons. Some of these items are used in ritual arts like Kuthurathib, Devakoothu, Chat, Poorakali, Kaliyootu, Mudiyettu, and Kaniyarkali. The museum also has over 175 photographs that depict the drama of these art forms.
One of the missions of The Kerala Folklore Academy is to compile and publish books and periodicals on folklore. The academy has already brought out fourteen volumes on the culture, art and life of the people. It also brings out a quarterly journal named Poli. These publications have gone a long way to promote awareness about folk life, art and rituals among the present generation.
The Kerala Folklore Academy
Kannur, Kerala - 670011
Tel: +91 497 2778090
Chirakkal is about 6.5 km from Kannur railway station and bus stand.
Nearest airport is Calicut (Karipur), which is about 135 km.