'Sutr Santati: Then. Now. Next' opens at Melbourne Museum

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'Sutr Santati: Then. Now. Next' opens at Melbourne Museum
Sutr Santati: Then. Now. Next. at Melbourne Museum. Photo by Eugene Hyland. Source: Museums Victoria.

MELBOURNE.- Sutr Santati: Then. Now. Next. Stories of India woven in thread. makes its Australian premiere at Melbourne Museum. The international exhibition opened on Saturday 13 May and will be on display until Saturday 3 September 2023, giving visitors an opportunity to see intricate, handmade textiles that have not been seen outside of India until now.

A creative partnership between Melbourne Museum and the Abheraj Baldota Foundation, this exciting exhibition celebrates 75 years of India’s independence and celebrates the innovation and artistry of its world-renowned contemporary designers and craftspeople.

Featuring 75 pieces, Sutr Santati: Then. Now. Next. Stories of India woven in thread. shows the versatility of textiles as an artistic medium. From colourful brocades to textural tapestries, finely embroidered silks and hand-painted pashminas, this exhibition offers visitors a unique opportunity to explore the limitless possibilities of fabric within contemporary art, fashion and design.

“The exhibition provides a rare opportunity for our visitors to experience these exquisitely designed and crafted pieces. Melbourne Museum is honoured to bring these works to Melbourne, and Australia, for the first time and celebrate the unique heritage of India’s textile traditions,” says Lynley Crosswell, CEO and Director of Museums Victoria.

Among the featured exhibits is a hand painted and embroidered pashmina shawl titled, ‘Gratitude to the Freedom Fighter’. This piece was developed by Waseem Ahmed from Antique Shawls, Dehli in collaboration with designer Atiq Ahemed, using a hand-painted base to give the shawl’s embroidery an added dimension. Hand painting is a recent innovation in the repertory of the Kashmir shawl and is an example of how distinct textile cultures and contemporary aesthetics have cross-pollinated to give rise to new forms.

“Abheraj Baldota Foundation is thrilled to partner with Museums Victoria to bring this exhibition to Australia as it offers a fresh perspective on the art of Indian textiles,” says exhibition curator, Lavina Baldota.

“I am so proud to present works by India’s current-day textile designers and artisans who are redefining the boundaries of traditional textile art and are pushing it to new heights. Visitors will be amazed by the skill, craftsmanship and creativity that can be seen across these contemporary pieces.”

Sutr Santati: Then. Now. Next. Stories of India woven in thread. is a visually stunning exploration of India’s cultural heritage and will appeal to art, design, fashion and craft enthusiasts alike. Melbourne Museum is proud to present this exceptional collection of textiles, offering visitors a unique perspective on the artistry and innovation of contemporary Indian design and craftsmanship.

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