Winner for 2019: Heirloom Naga  

The JSW Prize for Contemporary Craftsmanship felicitates Heirloom Naga in recognition of empowering the Naga Weaver.

The JSW Prize for Contemporary Craftsmanship powered by AD is a unique prize that seeks out individuals, organizations, schools or even entire villages that are contributing to a new conversation on craftsmanship in India. Paying equal attention to the work of the karigar (craftsman), the material they work with, the Prize also looks at where design intersects with their work.

Strewn with majestic architectural remains, every crevice of the landscape oozes with history about grand dynastic lineages, the city’s fraught battles and sieges, the lavish royal entertainments and sacrosanct religious ceremonies. Hampi bears proof of the once flourishing civilization while making an intriguing mythological narrative as it is mentioned as one of the iconic places in the Ramayana.

This year’s prize was awarded to Heirloom Naga, founded and run by Jesmina Zeliang. Heirloom Naga started off as a small backyard project that empowered a single Naga weaver and today provides employment to almost 450 Naga Women who are the masters of their craft.

Today the textiles woven out of the Heirloom Naga community of weavers form essential parts of international couture collections


Presenting the award, Mrs. Sangita Jindal, the convener of the award shared,

“The JSW Craftsmanship Award is a bridge between the worlds of art and craft. It is a platform that enables equal conversation between artisan and artist, makes possible for weavers, potters, metalworkers and a host of other professionals to grow creatively and monetarily. This prize creates an atmosphere where talent is cultivated, steered, nourished and sustained.”

Mrs. Sangita Jindal, Chairperson - JSW Foundation