The Museum has a large collection of textiles and clay models that showcase the sartorial diversity and culture of our country and this exhibition is presented in continuation of this tradition. 'Woven Wonders of Varanasi' marks the launch of an initiative where eminent designers pay homage to the artisans and their craft. The exhibition brings together India’s talented weavers and fashion designers together on one platform to pay tribute to the Banarasi textile industry.
An exhibition on the revival of Indian textiles, ‘Woven Wonders of Varanasi’ was inaugurated in the presence of His Excellency, Shri Vidyasagar Rao, Governor of Maharashtra; Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar, Honorable Minister of State, (Independent charge), Ministry of Textiles, Government of India; Shri Chandrakant Dada Patil, Honorable Minister of Textiles, Government of Maharashtra; Honorable Chief Secretary of Govt of Maharashtra, Shri Swadheen Kshatriya; Honorable Municipal Commissioner and Co-Chairman of Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum Trust, Shri Ajoy Mehta and Sushree Saroj Pandey, former Member of Parliament.
Bridging contemporary design and traditional craft, the exhibition aims to display the country’s textile tradition to a national and global audience, thereby providing a platform to showcase the best of India’s designers, weavers and textile workers and to encourage the Make In India Initiative.
This show is part of the series of curated exhibitions titled 'Engaging Traditions'. Artists are invited to respond to the Museum's collection, history and archives, addressing issues that speak directly to the traditions and issues that underlie the founding of the Museum, yet evoke the present by challenging orthodoxies and questioning assumptions.
Varanasi is a city older than history. It has been a pilgrimage centre through the ages and known in legend as Kasi and Benaras during the colonial era. Varanasi evokes images of exquisite temples, great music traditions, delectable paans and the finest woven fabrics. With the advent of technology, mechanized jacquard looms and power-looms have overtaken the original handwork. Saris, the main product, have also lost their popularity. This exhibition, a design initiative by Shaina N C, showcases the vibrant variety of weaves from Varanasi.
On display as part of 'Woven Wonders of Varanasi', are woven saris by some of the master craftsmen from Varanasi like Haji Zahirul Hasan, Imran Matin, Bharat Shah, Hafeez Ahmed, Mohammed Zaki, Noman, Saeed-ur Rehman, Kaushik Selat, Neeraj Selat, Nikhil Selat, Rajesh Shah and Viresh Shah.
Contemporary interpretations of the Benarasi textile include garments by designers Ritu Kumar, Rina Dhaka, Krishna Mehta, Shruti Sancheti, Nandita Mahtani, Neeta Lulla, Varun Bahl, Dabiri By Ambika Jain & Divya Bindra Kapur, Narendra Kumar Ahmed, Rajesh Pratap Singh, Payal Pratap, Gaurav Gupta, Rohit Bal, Raghavendra Rathore, Ritu Beri, Sans By Sanskruti Patel, Anita Dongre, Raw Mango By Sanjay Garg and Manish Malhotra.