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PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2009 6:24 pm 
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I am doing research on several early 19th century Indian textiles/turbans from the Smithsonian Institution collection (NMNH) and was wondering if anyone could suggest an Indian textile specialist for specific identification/dating/etc. I know this forum doesn't deal with India, so if you know of a better site to post this request I would greatly appreciate the guidance. Thank you in advance for your assistance.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2009 9:56 pm 
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If you want real experts on Indian textiles then Rosemary Crill, Senior Curator, Asian Dept at the Victoria & Albert Museum comes to mind first. Formerly of the V&A but now in the US is John Guy, Curator of South and Southeast Asian Art in the Metropolitan Museum's Department of Asian Art. Both have written extensively on the subject of Indian textiles and I would direct you to their books.

We do have one or two members of this forum with some knowledge of Indian textiles and would welcome discussion of them on this forum. So far we haven't found any member (or forum lurker) with an in depth knowledge willing to share this knowledge with us but it is certainly not true that 'this forum doesn't deal with India'.

Posting photos of some textiles is the best way to attract those with the appropriate knowledge and stimulate them to share their knowledge.

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Pamela

http://www.tribaltextiles.info
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2009 10:42 pm 
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Thanks for your reply, Pamela. I didn't see India listed in the "countries" link on the page, that was my basis for assuming it wasn't included, but thank you for the opportunity to post some photos. I have been a "lurker" for several months, but this is my first time posting.

There are 6 objects I am researching, none are particularly troublesome (or fascinating), but I could greatly benefit from the opinions of people more qualified than me in the department of Asian textiles (I specialize in Eastern European textiles).

I am posting three photos, one of a turban labeled "Turban of Mahommedans" and the other two of a scarf/shawl (I have many more photos if needed). The items were donated in 1898 and I would appreciate any information/insight, even if redundant. I would be especially interested in knowing if either of these objects can be linked to a specific geographic location or social division. The other four objects include two typical Brahmin silk turbans from Bombay/Mumbai, a Parsi turban, and a terribly plain, undecorated long piece of off-white muslin - possibly a wrapped skirt. What has been interesting to me is why the donor (unlikely to have been a textile collector) had turbans associated with three different religions.

I have a large stack of books that I have been flipping though, but I have not gotten through all of them yet. Regarding books, is anyone aware of any memoirs or written personal accounts of individuals who collected textiles in India in the 19th century?

Thank you again for your time and assistance.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 9:10 am 
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Thanks for your posted photos. Pending anyone more experienced commenting I will dig out my books by Rosemary Crill and one by John Guy to see if they can give any pointers. I am, today, undergoing a wall of new double glazing and the relevant books are in one of the rooms, mostly piled up waiting to be added to the relevant bibliography page for India http://www.tribaltextiles.info/bibliogr ... _books.htm as there are, I think, about three books by Rosemary Crill to add.

The reason India does not feature as a country on the main www.tribaltextiles.info website is that I personally have not had the opportunity to travel to India researching textiles nor do I have a big Indian textile collection although I do have a few. I am, however, attracted to Indian textiles especially their use of dyes which is pretty unsurpassed as well as inspiring so many other cultures.

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Pamela

http://www.tribaltextiles.info
on-line tribal textiles resource


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 9:16 am 
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I have just checked the V&A website and there is an area where you can search the collections http://collections.vam.ac.uk/ Given that the V&A has an excellent collection of Indian textiles this may be helpful. It could also give a point of reference for following up with the 'experts'.

I stuck in 'Indian textiles' as a test and got 9 pages re 126 items but haven't at the moment had a further look.

The British Museum has a good area for searching their collections but they do not have nearly such a good Indian collection as the V&A which got the lion's share from the old India Office and other donations.

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Pamela

http://www.tribaltextiles.info
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 Post subject: Indian Textiles
PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 7:53 pm 
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Joss Graham Gallery in London is also an expert. Joss has been dealing in Indian textiles for many years and may be able to help you identify these pieces. www.jossgraham.com , 10 Eccleston Street SW1W 9LT Tel/Fax: +44 (0)20 7730 4370

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 8:03 pm 
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Fantastic - thank you both for your suggestions. I will see what I can find out using these sources. In addition, if it helps, there is mention of Kanpur with the scarf documentation, however, it is unclear if this is reliable. The other items in the collection were most likely collected in Bombay Presidency (Mumbai or Surat I imagine).

I will be working on this project for several months so I will check back periodically and update this posting if I discover additional information.


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