India meets Italy at the Circle of Making — a cross cultural festival that opens in the Capital next week. Besides concerts and quizzes, an interesting part of the event is the exhibition of art by senior Italian artist, Tarshito aka Nicola Strippoli.
The artist, whose India-inspired art works are currently on display at the ongoing Venice Biennale in Italy, has been working with Indian artisans since 1986. Tarshito, who first came to India in 1979, spent several months with the carpet weavers in villages of central India in 1986.
Indian grassroot arts and the country’s rich linguistic heritage have changed the artist’s life in many ways, an official of the Italian Cultural Centre said on Monday.
The 57-year-old artist rechristened himself Tarshito — from a Sanskrit word — after he was introduced to the language during his numerous trips to India. Learning Sanskrit was one of the ways Tarshito explored the evolution of ancient Indian cultures and its reflections on the rural craft and livelihoods, helping him forge close friendships with artisans and reviving rare crafts.
His collaboration culminated in an exposition, Carpets of Meditation, in 1987. It was followed by a series of relationships with Indian crafts people and another exhibition, The Gold and the Clay, at Delhi’s Crafts Museum.
His show in Delhi will see a special on-the-go treat. “One of the special features of the exhibition will be a live installation of an Ambassador car with the map of India painted on its white chassis. It will be on display at the inauguration,” the official said. The exhibition, divided into two parts — The Circle of Making-1 and II, will be curated by Laila Tyabji and Amal Allana respectively.