The Art Blog by WOVENSOULS.COM

Notes on Antique Textiles, Folk Art & Timeless Traditions – Jaina Mishra

Before the Blue Jeans came along…

My world seemed mighty impressed with the concept of ‘blue jeans’ when they came along in the 1970s. Everyone had to have a pair. But before that, much much before … Continue reading

June 18, 2018 · Leave a comment

The Astitva Project – Phase II Launch

Read about the Introduction & Conception here. *** May 2018 There are only TWO men, in the entire ethnic group who know how to make the woven cummerbund worn by … Continue reading

June 14, 2018 · 2 Comments

The Rare Art of Double Sided Shia Embroidery

It is said that this art is no longer practiced. I am told they come from the Swat valley neighborhood and since there are not enough such textiles these are … Continue reading

June 11, 2018 · Leave a comment

Just Added – Fabulous African Textile Gallery

On WOVENSOULS.COM, the antique textiles gallery, I’ve just added several gorgeous textiles from various people groups in Africa. This is a region I’d consciously avoided collecting from in the past … Continue reading

June 6, 2018 · Leave a comment

Catching Butterflies in Burslem 

As a collector one is supposed to have focus and collect a particular category of objects.  But as the child (that none of us completely outgrow) (i hope) I enjoyed … Continue reading

June 4, 2018 · 3 Comments

Let’s Spin Some Yarn

Seen in the Himalayas….an activity, a skill, a lifestyle …. People STILL live in this charming way! All through our afternoon conversation in which our minds and mouths engaged, their … Continue reading

June 2, 2018 · Leave a comment

The Grace of a Burmese Fan

Could it be said that Art reflects the character of the people? This is most certainly true in the case of Burmese Art! The immense grace in the flowing lines … Continue reading

June 1, 2018 · Leave a comment

Wealth of  Ladakh 

Photos of photo prints of women wearing traditional jewelry at festivals.  The magnificentv Petak headdress has been discussed earlier.  But the  others have not received enough attention!  Here are sone … Continue reading

May 28, 2018 · Leave a comment

Breathtaking Monastery Art

First, the altitude in the Himalayas makes me breathless and then the paintings in the monasteries take my breath away! Each monastery has so much to offer the vision that … Continue reading

May 26, 2018 · Leave a comment

Wearing Art – Antique Himalayan Ceremonial Silver Belt

When everything the eye sees is artistic and pleasing, where art is an intrinsic part of every object, there must be undercurrents of joy constantly hitting the people…  Maybe THAT … Continue reading

May 24, 2018 · Leave a comment

A New Mystery -Ancient Terracotta Blocks 

Seen in one of the important trading hubs of the old Silk Route – and retrieved with difficulty from the back of  a dealer’s dusty shelf, lying in a plastic … Continue reading

May 23, 2018 · 1 Comment

Nomadic Weavings of Chanthang

Seen in the Himalayas in the Chanthang desert in Eastern Ladakh.  Their living spaces Let’s gp in … To see their home & their weavings ​(videa to follow later) Volunteers: … Continue reading

May 20, 2018 · Leave a comment

Mountain Art – Large Ancient Himalayan Buddhas – 4

The Yarma Gombo A set of natural rock formations revered and venerated by Buddhists as the appearance resembles the face of Buddha and other dieties. I would not have known … Continue reading

May 17, 2018 · Leave a comment

Mountain Art – Large Ancient Himalayan Buddhas – 3

Seen just outside Mulbeg – An engraving on a mountain face that may have been the starting point of a sculpture.  May 2018

May 17, 2018 · Leave a comment

Mountain Art – Large Ancient Himalayan Buddhas – 2

The Mulbeg Chamba Mulbeg is a small Buddhist village in Kargil that I’d first heard of while studying Perak headdress types.  Never thought U’d visit it someday to see the … Continue reading

May 14, 2018 · 1 Comment

Mountain Art – Large Ancient Himalayan Buddhas – 1

Huge Ancient Buddhist Sculptures in the Himalayas

May 13, 2018 · Leave a comment

Ancient Cave Paintings in Sasphol

13th Century Sasphol Caves, Ladakh Went up a mountain to see the magnificent Buddhist cave paintings. Worth every huff and puff. The big achievement was the small journey out of … Continue reading

May 10, 2018 · Leave a comment

A Visit to Phyang Monastery

Sat still within the ancient halls with only a young monk in attendance. Time passed unmarked by minutes and seconds. What do these matter when the walls have seen centuries!  … Continue reading

May 9, 2018 · Leave a comment

Art from the Past: 17th  Century Tibetan Paintings

Deities and Deomons with Tantric phurbas and dorjeys!  Under study

May 6, 2018 · Leave a comment

A Traditional Hearth

Serving up food for the tummy as well aa the soul!  It is the place where the whole family congregates over aclong breakfast of “khambheer” – hot thick rotis made … Continue reading

May 3, 2018 · Leave a comment

Ganjifa Playing Cards – Art of Sawantwadi

I remember spending all my summers playing various games all day long! We were about 12-15 boys and girls of various ages living in a neighbourhood of 5 buildings and … Continue reading

May 1, 2018 · Leave a comment

The Sawantwadi Palace

A walk around the charming old Palace building of Sawantwadi, in South Maharashtra just a few km from Goa. The overall building layout and the minor accents are native to … Continue reading

April 26, 2018 · Leave a comment

There’s No Limit to Creativity – Jewelry from Assam

Sharing the beautiful gemstone-studded traditional jewelry of Assam

April 19, 2018 · Leave a comment

Manila Manton Shawls – Early Global Textiles

Presenting a small online exhibition of palimpsest textiles – with layers of art, craft and culture contained within: The Canton Shawl aka Manila Manton aka Fringed Flapper Shawl

April 12, 2018 · Leave a comment

Wealth of Motifs – Fulani Art!

What if we measured the wealth of nations by the number of indigenous motifs it has? Or the cultural history within those? Would we be fighting the same wars? Here … Continue reading

April 10, 2018 · Leave a comment

A Weaver’s Heirloom Patan Patola Sari

Rediscovering a piece from the weaver’s heirlooms – a bridal sari with fabulous double ikat hand woven raw silk!

April 10, 2018 · Leave a comment

The Astitva Project – Phase II

Soon we will begin the next phase of the micro project. We will work with the same ethnic group that we did last time but this time it will be … Continue reading

April 6, 2018 · 1 Comment

Responsibility of Caring for an Antique Yuncu Kilim

An endearing note from the dealer who sold me this …

March 26, 2018 · Leave a comment

Daily Art Fix – Painting of a Weaver – 1800s

Some art to refresh the soul!

March 22, 2018 · Leave a comment

Daily Art Fix – Beshir Rug with Ikat Motif

A simple little work of textile art getting its time in the morning sun! This little piece was most probably woven by Beshir nomads in Turkmenistan. With a good exchange … Continue reading

March 21, 2018 · Leave a comment

How did Elibelinde travel to the Swat Valley?

One more example of migration of cultural memes that might hold a clue to historical events

March 18, 2018 · Leave a comment

My Ceremonial Textiles

In India we have so many life ceremonies! Every Hindu goes through or is supposed to go through 16 important ones and dozens of lesser ones. So one attends one’s … Continue reading

March 13, 2018 · Leave a comment

Material Pleasures

When I was young I desired a million things but had no money to buy them with. Now when I am old, I have more money but very few things … Continue reading

March 12, 2018 · Leave a comment

Daily Art Fix – Applique Art from Bharaich

View a Khanduri cloth from Bharaich from the Met

March 5, 2018 · Leave a comment

Daily Art Fix: Men with an extra Arm?

Or is it a stick?  Maybe they are the sons of the weaver!  Interesting motif on an antique Kazak rug. 

March 2, 2018 · Leave a comment

Sentinels & Thresholds 

The threshold is a very important line in a traditional Indian home.  It is washed and decorated beautifully every day with auspicious symbols  drawn in powder by the woman of … Continue reading

February 28, 2018 · 4 Comments

Daily Art Fix – Antique Kalamkari Art

A fabulous 17th C Kalamkari Artwork!

February 23, 2018 · Leave a comment

Patan Patola Ikat Weaving – HOW?

For those who wondered how! A video interview with a masterweaver Kanaiyalalbhai who explains the process step by step. To understand the technique of weaving Patan Patola double ikats and … Continue reading

February 14, 2018 · Leave a comment

Ivory Art for Royal Courts

All carvings are from the Victoria & Albert Museum, London   Feb 2018 jaina mishra | wovensouls  

February 14, 2018 · Leave a comment

An Indian Painted Narrative Scroll

Supposedly this is an old Bengal painted narrative scroll called Patta. Does this have the same rustic character as that of other Bengal Pattuas? Doesn’t the finesse of each element … Continue reading

February 13, 2018 · Leave a comment

Daily Art Fix – Ramayan in the Chamba Valley

Amazing 18th century Chamba Rumaal with scenes from the Ramayan https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/72821 Sita’s Fire Test   Killing Ravan – A rare depiction with the severed heads and arms Am completed WOWed  … Continue reading

February 10, 2018 · Leave a comment

The Jehangir Spinel

Owned and bequeathed by Jehangir, Shah Jahan and Aurangzeb this amazing Spinel is now in the  Victoria & Albert museum in London. Surprisingly it has been described by the V&A … Continue reading

February 10, 2018 · Leave a comment

Tipu Sultan’s Tiger

What an interesting artwork commissioned by Tipu Sultan!  Seen at the V&A museum, London

February 9, 2018 · Leave a comment

Daily Art Fix – Saris as Textile Art!

Seen at the Victoria & Albert museum jaina mishra Feb 2018

February 8, 2018 · Leave a comment

Daily Art Fix – from Gujarat again!

Late 14th–early 15th century printed textile – Gujarat! Met Museum https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/72747 Celebrate Gujarat!! Feb 2018 jaina mishra| wovensouls View more exquisite antique textiles and more on

February 7, 2018 · Leave a comment

Painted Map of Benaras – Indian Art

A pilgrim’s map of Benaras with the Kashi Vishwanath temple at the centre. Seen in the Victoria & Albert Museum, London Feb 2018 jaina mishra| wovensouls View more Exquisite Antique … Continue reading

February 7, 2018 · Leave a comment

Silken flowers from Gujarat India 

One more fabulous piece from Gujarat! At first I thought it was a print … until I read the explanatory note! ❤️ This textile is from the V & A … Continue reading

February 5, 2018 · Leave a comment

Soldiers in Silk – Guns & Roses

This mesmerising silk Amli embroidery on a square pashmina shawl is from the 1800s and depicts soldiers circling around a thriving establishment. Note the deliberately highlighted flowers (roses?) amidst the … Continue reading

February 4, 2018 · 1 Comment

Daily Art Fix – An Antique Robe with Amli Embroidery

Works such as these remind us of the value added simply by the skill of an artist! The wool and the silk and the scissors could have made a robe … Continue reading

February 4, 2018 · 1 Comment

Art in Gold for a Goan Wedding

I cannot imagine how it is that the Goan found the time between cultivating their unbelievable rice, cooking and eating their amazing curries and enjoying the subsequent coma-like siestas that … Continue reading

February 3, 2018 · Leave a comment

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