Creative patches of work from Sindh

Presentation

Creative patches of work from Sindh

Did you know that in the first century AD, the cloth imported by the Romans, known as ‘Cendatus’, came from Sindh? Yet again it was the early inhabitants of the Indus Valley, who had mastered the complex processing of the plant fibres and cultivated cotton.

These are just few of the facts, which one learnt from Noorjehan Bilgrami, an artist, textile designer and researcher, who has also contributed to the book Sindh: Past Glory, Present Nostalgia. Noorjehan Bilgrami gave a presentation on the living textile traditions of Sindh, which gave an insight to the audience on the significance of the textiles of Sindh.  A brief introduction on Sindh’s culture starting from the Indus Valley Civilisation till the 21st century was discussed in the beginning, which had many interesting facts like how Sindh is situated at the crossroads of diverse cultural influences.

There was also an interesting collection of clothes from Sindh on display. There were silk shawls, twisted dupattas, quilts and Ajraks, a traditional textile from Sindh. The clothes were bright in colour and would catch anyone’s eyes instantly. Some Indus Valley Civilisation seals were depicted on the clothes and this aspect added to the uniqueness of the clothes.

She also spoke about many other types of textiles from Sindh like ralli, tuk ralli which are used by the faqirs and the snake charmers, who traverse the desert with their colourful  jholis. Khes, another traditional patterned bedspread commonly used in homes is a double-weave cloth, intricately woven with cotton or silk yarn. Also on display were Malir, the cloth worn by Meghwar men during wedding time, which is draped on the bridegroom’s shoulders and voluminous ghagra skirts that are worn by women of both the Muslim and Hindu communities. Guj, a wedding shirt with thickly encrusted embroidery, was also available.

Noorjehan ended her presentation with a verse from the poem The Melody and Philosophy of Shah Latif Bhitai’.

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