Indian designer RAHUL MISHRA presented his Fall Winter 2022 Haute Couture Collection with a show held in Paris. The Tree of Life collection celebrates nature’s opulence and beauty and renders our gratitude for nature’s wisdom. For the collection, two and three dimensional embroideries articulate the first flush of nature emerging on the surface of a body, and life that grows from it. A contemporary application using multitude of traditional surface embellishment techniques from the Indian subcontinent, this collection is a manifestation of artistic memory. It endeavours to cultivate a circular economy for craft communities in India.
Growing up in India, we witness numerous instances of worshipping trees. This inherent part of our culture manifests in different ways during the harvest festivals spread in regions across our subcontinent. My grandmother would tie a hand spun cotton thread around a banyan tree, not far from our house. The memory of this routine, of the ladies of the house worshipping the tree to bless their families, is a precious one. The great Banyan tree is a god like presence through our lives, witnessing our journey from childhood to adulthood just as it did with generations of our ancestors. It is the visual of this very tree — where numerous mornings of seasons of the earth have passed —that flashed before my eyes each time I sat to sketch this collection. – Rahul Mishra
A tree’s memories and life are engrained in the rings of its trunk; as it grows from within towards the bark. Impressions on the ground, the storms that it weathers, the warm sunsets and cold rains – all unforgotten – and constantly preserved in its consciousness. The elders in Africa would hold meetings around the ancient Baobab tree with the belief that the tree would lend its wisdom to those seeking clarity for making important decisions. A tree that lasts centuries and witnesses evolution of the human race and mother earth as it changes its course – even the splitting of seven continents – it’s fruit is bound to be priceless. – from press release
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