Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner. Facebook Messenger An icon of the facebook messenger app logo. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Facebook Messenger An icon of the Twitter app logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. WhatsApp Messenger An icon of the Whatsapp messenger app logo. Email An icon of an mail envelope. Copy link A decentered black square over a white square.

Glasgow Museums acquires Indian artworks as part of efforts to record and represent pandemic for future generations

© Glasgow MuseumsPhad painting, by Kalyan Joshi
Phad painting, by Kalyan Joshi

Five new pieces of Indian artwork, themed around the pandemic, are to go on display in Glasgow.

Glasgow Museums has acquired the pieces as part of work to collect material to record and represent the extraordinary period in history we are living through.

Unique to Scotland, the collection is a combination of works on cloth and on paper, each showcasing a distinct style of traditional folk and tribal craft from a different region of India.

© Glasgow Museums
Odisha pattachitra, by Apindra Swain

Duncan Dornan, Head of Glasgow Museums, said: “We’re delighted to acquire these timely, intricate and engaging works, with the support of the National Fund for Acquisitions.

“Every aspect of life has been touched by Covid-19. Contemporary collecting around the pandemic will help us comprehend the experience and allow future generations to learn a little about what exactly life was like living with it.

“This involves looking beyond Glasgow at the global response. These five paintings are personal and honest yet speak to and for so many. Discussing issues we are now so familiar with, the work seems particularly appropriate at this time of a second national lockdown.”

The pieces will add to the city’s World Cultures collection, which features South Asian and folk art collections.

Dornan added: “The poignancy of these works, illustrating the effects of the virus across India are also likely to touch the lives of the diaspora South Asian communities in Glasgow. This capsule collection is a welcome and thought-provoking addition to Glasgow Museums’ collection now and for future generations.”

© Glasgow Museums
Warli, by Rajesh Chaitya Vangad

In India, rural folk art has traditionally been used as a means of spreading awareness within communities.

Every region has its own distinct style of colour combinations, layout, figures and decorative motifs, passed down from generation to generation for thousands of years.

Together with other objects, these artworks will provide an internationally important visual record and insight from a particular cultural perspective, during an unprecedented global crisis.

The artists included are at the forefront of their individual traditions, and each has exhibited their works internationally and been recognised with national art awards.

Rajesh Chaitya Vangad is behind one of the pieces, measuring almost one metre sq and made with a bamboo nib on specially prepared cloth.

One of India’s best-known folk and tribal artists, he is renowned for his incredibly detailed Warli paintings and has created immensely vibrant murals at Mumbai International Airport and the Craft Museum, New Delhi.

He said: “I was listening to the news and thought I must depict this in the Warli style, it is such a significant moment in world history and I have to record it for posterity. Now my focus has shifted from the spread of the virus to the effects of the lockdown.

“I am now showing what is happening to people because of the lockdown. Students are sitting at home, companies have shut down and so many people are out of jobs. I am very pleased my Covid story and its message will reach people all over the world.”

Post Covid Glasgow Museums intends to showcase the works as part of existing displays on South Asian art, in temporary exhibitions in the Fragile Art and Cultural Connections galleries in Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum and in proposed future displays reflecting on the Covid-19 pandemic.