Exhibition

Kutch Revisited
Ajrakh and Bhujodi
Far East Art Studio & Sanskara Designs
At Nehru centre London
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Shri Abdul Rauf Khatri is a National Award winner (2009) & 10th generation Ajrakh hand block printer (working primarily with natural dyes from Ajrakhpur, Kutch, Gujarat, India). Abdul was born in Dhamadka , Kutch and trained in Ajrakh under his father Shri Abdul Razak Mohammad Bhai Siddik Bhai Khatri a renowned National Award winner of 1998. The Bhuj earthquake of 2001 completely destroyed the village of Dhamadka thereby forcing the Khatris to relocate to a place which is now called Ajrakhpur after the craft itself.

Ajrakh came to Kutch from Sind almost 400 years ago. It is an extremely complex and time consuming process of hand block printing. Each piece is intricate and printed using natural indigo and natural dyes from plants and minerals around the village on cotton and silk textiles. Today the very traditional craft of Ajrakh hand block printing faces a tough competition from other modern, quicker methods of printing using bright chemical dyes.

Mangariya Murji Hamirbhai is a bhujodi weaver from the village of Bhujodi, Kutch, Gujarat, India. He descends from a fine lineage of master weavers. As an independent artist he struggled to maintain a sustainable living from his craft, but with the help of a local NGO he was able to move from being just a karigar to a designer and thus make his work appeal to an uber contemporary clientele. With further education from a local design school for artisans, he honed the skills needed to hold his own stead in a competitive market. Bhujodi shawls were primarily woven for the Rabari shepherds who would wear it over their shoulders as a shawl or as a sarong. But with the tide of time the weavers of Bhujodi have reinterpreted this practical and unglamorous garment to appeal to a modern audience.

Also on display will be jewellery curated by Sanskara Designs that reflects the spirit of Kutch. The Far East Art Studio will be exhibiting their curated line of bhujodi saris.