Weaving the exquisite Banarasi

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Mrs Ambani met Swadesh artists, including Shri Ramji and Shri Mohammed Haroon, deeply appreciating their talent and service to the arts.
Mrs Ambani met Swadesh artists, including Shri Ramji and Shri Mohammed Haroon, deeply appreciating their talent and service to the arts.
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Weaving the exquisite Banarasi

Mrs Nita Ambani, Founder & Chairperson of Reliance Foundation, has been very closely involved through the years in promoting Indian art and culture. Artists Shri Ramji and Shri Mohammed Haroon showcased Banarasi weaving at the Nita Mukesh Ambani Cultural Centre in Mumbai. At the Swadesh exhibition, artists who are preserving India’s valuable culture and heritage are able to connect directly with visitors, who in turn witness a sublime experience observing the artists live in action. Recently, Mrs Ambani met Swadesh artists, including Shri Ramji and Shri Mohammed Haroon, deeply appreciating their talent and service to the arts.

The video of this interaction of Shri Ramji and Shri Mohammed Haroon with Mrs Nita Ambani can be viewed here.

The Banarasi brocade enjoys immense popularity and is used to craft a variety of apparel, ranging from resplendent sarees to opulent dresses and even exquisite upholstery.

Banarasi weaves frequently feature nature-inspired themes such as flowers, foliage, and animals. This textile, made of fine silk is adorned with pure gold and silver zari, featuring distinct motifs inspired by the Indian and Persian design vocabulary. The interwoven floral and foliate motifs, such as Kalga, Bel, Jaal, Koniya, Shikargah, and distinguish the famous Banaras saree.

Shri Ramji, 57, a resident of Sarai Mohana village near Varanasi, is a master artisan who took to weaving as a child by watching his father weave. Nearly most of the households in his village of 25,000 people are involved in weaving. He has learnt everything there is about weaving Banarasi silk and is on a mission to share with others to keep the art alive by uniting the weaver families and ensuring that there is work for all. He recently trained 75 women. A Banarasi saree can take as long as two months to weave, he says.

“Swadesh helped the world to see what it takes to weave a Banarasi saree. It seemed like our art was hidden until now. With her presence, involvement and support, Mrs. Nita Ambani is championing our cause in ways that we cannot. With this kind of support, the younger generation is also ready to associate with the art,” he says.

Shri Mohammed Haroon, 62, was forced to take up weaving for earning an income when he was just 15 owing to the untimely passing of his father, but he took to it with great zeal. This resident of Kaman Gadha in Varanasi soon learnt everything about weaving and can even set up a loom.

“At Swadesh, many people appreciated our skills because of the art. The recognition that artists are getting at Swadesh because of their association with the initiative will greatly help the art forms and bring new artisans to the field,” he says.

About Post Author

Editor Desk

Antara Tripathy M.Sc., B.Ed. by qualification and bring 15 years of media reporting experience.. Coverred many illustarted events like, G20, ICC,MCCI,British High Commission, Bangladesh etc. She took over from the founder Editor of IBG NEWS Suman Munshi (15/Mar/2012- 09/Aug/2018 and October 2020 to 13 June 2023).
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