Ipsita Sahu

Ipsita Sahu is pursuing her PhD in Cinema Studies from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. She has worked on film exhibition and single-screen theatres, particularly the Chanakya Theatre in New Delhi. Her current project looks at the black-and-white television era in India. As someone born and brought up in Odisha, Sahu's interest in its rich tradition of crafts and textiles led her to work with the master weaver Surender Meher on this project on the Sambalpuri ikat.

Weavers of Sambalpuri Textile showing the process and intricacies in the making of this fabric; Barpali, Odisha; March, 2017

Guided by the master weaver, Surender Meher, the video shows the various intricate stages of weaving a Sambalpuri textile. The combination of tying, dyeing and weaving makes it a labour-intensive craft.

 

Surendra Meher is the youngest son of legendary ikat weaver Padmashree Kunjabihari Meher, from Barpali. After graduating from Sambalpur University he devoted himself to innovating and experimenting new designs in the age-old traditional art of Sambalpuri Ikat to adapt it to modern tastes. Surendra Meher has set a record in being honoured with the State Award of Orissa for three years consecutively. He also received the National Award in 1991 and the Kalanidhi Award in 1993. He has represented the country in the 'India Week exhibition' at the Algurair Centre, Dubai, and also at the Asian Art Museum, San Fransisco, in 1997. His classic creations have been part of the permanent display of the Art Gallery of the Crafts Museum, New Delhi and the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco.