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Traded Treasure: Indian Trade Cloth, Influencing and Influenced by World Markets

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Traded Treasure: Indian Trade Cloth, Influencing and Influenced by World Markets


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Saturday, September 9
10:00 a.m.–noon PT
Speaker: Jeevak Parpia, Professor of Physics, Cornell University, and Banoo Parpia, retired Director of Asian and Middle East Alumni Affairs and Development at Cornell University
Virtual Event


India is renowned for the textiles it produced for centuries for world markets around the Indian Ocean, from Indonesia to the east coast of Africa and beyond, into the Mediterranean and Europe. Not only did the textiles from the market influence the Indian makers, but the local markets also began to produce textiles resembling the imports from India. Together, our speakers, Jeevak and Banoo Parpia, have created a renowned collection of Indian textiles, which are currently being exhibited at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston in Woven Wonders: Indian Textiles from the Parpia Collection.

Using the Parpia collection as a starting point, Jeevak and Banoo Parpia (with examples drawn from their collection and others) will focus on several designs that exhibit continuity, and the likely influence of trade on design and demand. An example is the trade cloths that have strongly been influenced by Jain Kalpasutra paintings, which often depict women in various roles. Yet, none of the textiles featuring these images have been found in India, but have traveled to Egypt and to Indonesia. Similarly, there is evidence of influences of Turkey on current patola design in India and also to Indonesia.


Please reserve your spot by clicking on this link. All participants will be sent the Zoom link and instructions via email once you secure your place. Space is limited.

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Jointly sponsored by Textile Museum Associates of Southern California, Inc. (TMA/SC) and South Asian Arts Council.


Featured at top right: © Parpia Collection

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September 9, 2023
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
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