Dipali Deshpande: Painting the sari

Sari-inspired paintings by a Gurgaon artist are currently on view at a Delhi exhibition.

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Love the sari? Then you’ll love Dipali Deshpande’s interpretations of it.

The textures, the draperies, the fabrics, the colours, the folds, the embroidery motifs, the accessories, the intricacies – all find arresting expression in Dipali’s designs.

We’re not talking about her wardrobe, though. We’re referring to her paintings instead.

artist and painter dipali deshpande
Artist Dipali Deshpande. Source: IANS

A Gurgaon-based artist, Dipali’s exhibition entitled ‘Resham ‘ is currently exhibiting at the All India Fine Arts and Crafts Society (AIFACS), Delhi. It is all about the sari.

Her saris hang from a peg in housewifely busyness, lay spread on the ground in indulgent abandon, sit neatly folded on a hanger. These scenes from your typical Indian woman’s boudoir speak not only of the saris themselves but also of daily domestic preoccupation.

The artist’s love for the nine-yard wonder began in her childhood in small-town Maharashtra where her family ran a textile showroom. The early awe with which she observed the fabric folds and flows inspired her exhibition.

“The feel of different types of fabrics has always fascinated me, “ Dipali revealed, adding, “I have deep adoration for the luxury and richness of silk. I love and am inspired by silk and handloom fabric – these are treasures of India that I feel need to be preserved, and my art is my way of doing this.”

Quite appropriately, she accomplished this with traditional oil painting techniques.

It worked perfectly for her.

“To catch that 100 per cent material feel is important,“ she described. “For example, while viewing a painting, silk should give you that rich, silky, smooth, and luxurious feel, while jute should give you that rough feeling (texture).”

The artist also has researched on the invention of the timeless nine-yard wonder and its evolution from Indus Valley civilization to today’s modern trendy drapes, and how expensive stones and gold threads made their way to exclusive saris.


READ ALSO: Sustainable and fabulous: Banana fibre saris

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