Mystic Of Indian Textiles in International Museums

Prof. (Dr) Charu Smita Gupta Founder/ Former Director MGCATT Museum, Siem Reap Cambodia

Retired Deputy Director, National Crafts Museum

Ministry of Textiles, Pragati Maidan, New Delhi

Indian textiles have been weaving and ornate magic for centuries. The famous bust of Indus valley, The Priest King spells the skills of textiles weavers-dyers and block printers/ embroiderers for centuries. Some of these precious collections’ dates to nearly 4000 years. This bust doesn’t speak of the quality of the fabric, nor do the Ajanta cave paintings or for that matter various other sculptures found in metal and stone tell the entire story of its exquisiteness. But the actual samples of the block printed cotton fabrics found in Futstat Egyptian tombs distinctly speak of the glorious days of trading of the Indian cottons from the 9th century onwards. The Indian foreign trade and her textiles were interconnected. It is said that the spices were wrapped in beautiful textiles bags.

Block Printed textile fragment from Futstat–presently exhibited in Metropolitan Museum, New York, USA.