The Sindhu Project Launched To Explore Ancient Civilisations

The Sindhu Project Launched To Explore Ancient Civilisations

ISLAMABAD, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News – 14th Dec, 2022 ) :Satrang Art Gallery on Wednesday exhibited ‘The Sindhu Project’ by Gunjan Kumar, an Indian-American artist and Mahwish Chishty, a Pakistani-American artist.

The Sindhu Project is a journey of research into ancient civilisations and collaboration across borders. Gunjan and Mahwish are interested in exploring their roots and the rich cultural legacy of South Asia.

The works on display explore the intricate motifs, innovative materials and architectural design of the ancient sites visited by the artists. The event was the final stop of this exhibition that has traveled from institutions in Chicago to Lahore to New Delhi and finally to Islamabad.

The Sindhu Project is the culmination of a fascinating journey of collaboration and discovery. Born in South Asian families that had each migrated across new borders during the partition in 1947, both artists share an interest in exploring heritage, history, legacy and loss. Their work draws from the rich culture South Asia has inherited from previous civilisations. Visits to archaeological sites of the renowned Indus Valley Civilization (3300 BCE to 1300 BCE) for Gunjan and to Taxila of the Gandharan and Kushan periods (300 BCE to 400 CE) for Mahwish sparked a process of deep research, investigation, and creation for the two artists.

Gunjan’s work is an exploration of the material culture and visual design elements of Dholavira, near Bhuj in Gujarat and Sanghol in the Punjab, ancient sites of the renowned and technologically advanced ancient Indus Valley Civilisation.

Her interest lies in uncovering the stories contained within materials discovered at these sites, which speak to the innovation and lived experiences of the time. Created from materials associated from the Harappan era, layers of terracotta, riverbed soil, handwoven cotton, muslin, and organic pigments like turmeric, the resulting art is delicate and detailed.

Mahwish’s drawings, prints and laser cut acrylic sculptures are a response to the intricate motifs, architectural designs and advanced layout of the ancient, site of Dharmarajika, Taxila and its surrounding area. Her work considers the configuration of the monastic complex of the site, and her own personal relationship with legacy and identity. She draws in verses from the Sufi poet Bulleh Shah, as well as imagery from excavated pots and traditional ajrak cloth, said Zahra Khan, Curator.

Gunjan Kumar is an Indian American artist and scholar based in Chicago and originally from Punjab, India. She has spent many years traveling through India and other countries in South Asia, observing age-old practices in textiles and indigenous arts and crafts, visiting archeological sites, observing prehistoric paintings and other tribal arts.

Mahwish Chishty combines new media and conceptual work with materials and techniques of South Asian art and craft traditions. Her work has been exhibited at several museums and art galleries all throughout the world. Chishty’s work is in public and private collections, including the Foreign Office in Islamabad; Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Fukuoka; and Imperial War Museum, London.

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