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Ongoing Exhibition in Delhi is an overwhelming Pictorial Tale of Chanderi silk

Chanderi Silk is world famous but this town is one of the few places left where handlooms -- a tedious and dying sari-making technique -- is still used to make silk fabric

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Saree weaving (representational image), Wikimedia

New Delhi, April 29, 2017: The overwhelming story of Chanderi silk is symbolically represented in an ongoing exhibition here under the Neel Dongre Grants for Excellence in Photography.

Photographer Bharat Tiwari, the Founder of Shabdankan.com, which was awarded the “Bhashadoot Samman” by the Hindi Academy for reinforcing Hindi through the digital media, brings alive several unknown facets of this age-old tradition in his exhibition of photographs.

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Tiwari said that he was deeply touched by the lives of the handloom weavers that he came across in Chanderi, a small picturesque town in the Bundelkhand region of Madhya Pradesh.

Chanderi Silk is world famous but this town is one of the few places left where handlooms — a tedious and dying sari-making technique — is still used to make silk fabric.

Tiwari’s project “Silk routes via Chanderi” attempts to unravel the various shades and intricacies that go into the making of Chanderi silk. Represented with extreme sensitivity, these photographs sort of transports the viewers to the setting where the various craftsmen are at work.

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When he first visited the small town, Tiwari said he was awe-struck as well as equally pleased to see the generosity with which they work.

“It is not an easy task. They are dealing with silk and as such there is no room for error. I was so moved to see the way they work — in their homes, with the participation of almost all members of the family — that I began to capture the various scenes on my camera. It was a magical experience for me,” Tiwari told IANS.

The photographer also expressed his concern, saying that with the advent of power looms, the profession is changing fast as more and more weavers are being attracted towards it. But Chanderi is still caught in its old-world charm and the future of weavers appears gloomy.

Tiwari’s work is represented along with Mrigank Kulshrestha, Ankit Agrawal, Taha Ahmad and Vikas Gupta in a collaborative photography project under the aegis of Neel Dongre Awards/Grants for Excellence in Photography (2017) by India Photo Archive Foundation.

Curated by photographer, historian and archivist Aditya Arya, the works of all the five photographers bear witness to the skills, some of which are fading away or are being rendered obscure for various reasons.

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“A documentary photographer has a responsible role in the society. I firmly believe they create histories by documenting the traditions and the constantly evolving societies and their work has a great place in the archives being a witness to the process of change. In an age where new inventions and new technologies of mass production are being announced every minute, it is essential to document the great traditions and craft of the past for posterity,” curator Aditya Arya said.

The crafts and traditions documented by the five photographers traverse various parts of the country, and various kinds of skills that require the dexterity of hands and sight and a fair amount of patience and commitment to the art form.

The Neel Dongre Grants for Excellence in Photography were launched in the year 2012 and are aimed at creating a visual platform, where emerging photographers get an opportunity to showcase their work to a relevant audience, receive funds to support their projects for the growth of their passion.

The exhibition is on at the India International Centre till May 2. (IANS)

Next Story

Exhibition Marking 100 Years of First Display of Korean Anti-Colonial Resistance to Open in Delhi

Notably, the entire Korean Peninsula was under Japanese occupation for 35 years from 1910-1945 because the Korean War (1950-53) separated it into North and South

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Exhibition, South Korea, India
The exhibition "100th Anniversary of the March 1st Independence Movement: One Shiny Day", commemorating the spirit of the March 1st Movement - pioneering display of anti-colonial sentiment against its coloniser Japan - will open at the National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA). Pixabay

As part of South Korea-India cultural exchange, an exhibition marking 100 years of the first display of Korean anti-colonial resistance will open in Delhi, and a show on Mahatma Gandhi’s Dandi March will travel to a South Korean museum next year.

The exhibition “100th Anniversary of the March 1st Independence Movement: One Shiny Day”, commemorating the spirit of the March 1st Movement – pioneering display of anti-colonial sentiment against its coloniser Japan – will open at the National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) on August 14 and will continue till September 29.

Notably, the entire Korean Peninsula was under Japanese occupation for 35 years from 1910-1945 because the Korean War (1950-53) separated it into North and South.

On March 1, 1919, the movement was joined by people from different walks of life regardless of their region, status and wealth, hinting at the people’s will for independence at home and abroad.

Exhibition, South Korea, India
As part of South Korea-India cultural exchange, an exhibition marking 100 years of the first display of Korean anti-colonial resistance will open in Delhi, and a show on Mahatma Gandhi’s Dandi March will travel to a South Korean museum next year. Pixabay

The upcoming show will display art inspired by the North-South divide, the Korean War refugees, downfall of Korean imperialists, and the first freedom struggle and people’s solidarity.

“The exhibition will display the artworks of 12 artists teams: KWON Hayoun, KIM BoMin, KIM Woojo, BAE Sungmi, SHON Sunghyun, AHN Eun-me, AHN Changhong, LEE Sanghyun, LEE Woosung, JEONG Jae-wan and JO Dongwhan + JO Haejun,” the Korean Cultural Centre India said in a statement to IANS.

The exhibition will also celebrate 15th August, which is the Independence Day of both India and Korea – North and South.

“The exhibition presents the underlying theme of the sorrow and restoration of South Korea that has similar modern history to India. I hope the artworks promote mutual understanding and shared values of both people of India and Korea,” Shin Bong-kil, South Korea’s Ambassador to India, said.

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To deepen the Korea-India friendship through shared culture, NGMA’s in-house curated exhibition on Gandhi’s ‘Salt March’ in Dandi, will open next year at Daegu Art Museum in Daegu, South Korea.

The show of sculptures, paintings, sketches and art installations, will signify the non-violent independence movements of both Indian and Korean people.

The multimedia exhibition “Dandi Yatraa” is part of the year-long celebrations of the 150th birth anniversary of Gandhi and can be currently viewed at NGMA here. (IANS)