Inspirational India

With over 4000 shows to contend with, including some of the largest exhibitions and names in the art world, it’s understandably difficult to stand out from the crowd. Whilst you can’t compare this exhibition to it’s larger competitors, the quality of small local exhibitions are incredibly high. Unfortunately, Galerie Mirages falls a little short.

A trip for this alone would leave you wanting.

The shop is tucked away down a picturesque alleyway and you’re greeted by the warming smell of incense as you walk through the door. As the gallery specialises in fairtrade goods from around the world, it’s not immediately obvious that there is an exhibition taking place. The whole shop is filled with beautiful examples of jewellery, textiles and other goods, however finding the information about ‘Inspirational India’, was a little arduous. The exhibition consists of wall hangings, block print examples and applique. Whilst the examples are ornate, the busy layout created a bit of a sensory overload. The exhibition information is presented on A4 pages placed surreptitiously on nearby tables and could easily be missed by any gallery ambler.

The average Fringe-goer has limited and precious time, planning where to go with precision in order to make the most of their trip. Galerie Mirages is well presented and nestled in a beautiful part of Stockbridge, encapsulating the beauty of Edinburgh wonderfully. This gallery would be best enjoyed as part of a wander around the historic part of town, unfortunately a trip for this alone would leave you wanting.

The topic is one that is prevalent, in a time when we question the cultural appropriation and treatment of those who make our clothes. The focus on the links between the paisley print and the Indian textile industry is an interesting one, but the content needs to be fleshed out in order to engage with visitors. The exhibition would benefit from some more engaging content and a more striking layout, in order to lure festival-goers so far from the fringe favourites.

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The Blurb

For over 2,000 years Indian textiles have had a major influence on fashion in Europe, in the last 400 years they have inspired British design from the Paisley pattern to liberty print. The gallery itself grew out of this Scottish/Indian connection and it is our 33rd festival. This selling exhibition is housed in a 19th-century bakehouse and pays tribute to these stunning textiles. There are wonderful examples of blockprinting, embroidery and appliqué. We have personally sourced rare tribal embroideries, outstanding blockprinted spreads and quilts, jackets and shawls. If you love textiles this is a must-see exhibition.

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