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Saturday, February 13, 2016

  “Traditional Textiles of Pakistan”


John Gillow

Author, Lecturer, Collector,

World Traveler and Dealer, United Kingdom

Politically troubled Pakistan is now rarely visited by outsiders. However, John Gillow still goes there on an annual basis, continuing to collect and research, fascinated by what is probably the richest textile culture in South Asia.  This includes the embroidered and woven textiles of the various peoples of Pakistan such as the Mangali and Khatak of North West Frontier, the Kailash Kafirs of Chitral, and the Shinn people of Kohistan.  In addition to these, his talk will cover the embroidered phulkari wedding shawls of the settled peoples of the fertile valleys of Hazara, and the trade textiles made largely in Punjab, both for North West Frontier and for neighboring Afghanistan.  John will offer a broad survey of the textiles produced in the late 19th and 20th centuries, putting them into their social and historical contexts, including the fabulous embroidered textiles of Sindh, and the woven and embroidered glories of Baluchistan.

John Gillow has spent more than 40 years collecting the folk textiles of Asia and Africa. He has written a series of seminal books on world textiles and the textiles of India, Indonesia and Africa, and lectures worldwide.  His latest book, "Textiles of the Islamic World" published by Thames and Hudson, was his topic when he last spoke to TMA/SC in 2014, and he is currently working on "Block Prints of Europe and Asia" for the same publisher.  John encourages TMA/SC members to bring examples of Pakistani textiles from their collections for identification and show & tell.

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