MAP launches its theme of Creative Connections, with textile artist Renuka Reddy in conversation with researcher, curator and collector Peter Lee. The duo will explore the material histories of kalamkari in the subcontinent, through select works from the MAP Collection, providing insights into techniques, motifs and markets that shaped the evolution of this textile art across different cultures.

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Renuka Reddy

Renuka Reddy is a textile artist whose work is a series of experiments primarily addressing one question, ‘Is it possible to produce 18th-century quality chintz today?’ Referring to historic accounts on the hand-painted chintz making process, she researches and experiments continually searching for the perfect combination of cloth, milk, mordants, dung, dyes and resists that propelled chintz into one of the most important textiles, both produced in and exported from India. Reddy has a background in textile crafts in India, automotive textiles in Detroit, Michigan and is based in Bangalore, India. Her work is part of the permanent collections of the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, New Delhi; the TAPI Collection, Surat; the Fries Museum, Leeuwarden; and the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto.

Peter Lee
Peter Lee is a textiles collector, independent researcher, and the Honorary Curator of the NUS Baba House – a historical house museum managed by the National University of Singapore. He co-authored The Straits Chinese House with Jennifer Chen, published by the National Museum of Singapore in 1998 and 2006. He has been involved in the curation and production of several exhibitions and catalogues including Junk to Jewels — The Things that Peranakans Value (Peranakan Museum, 2008); Inherited and Salvaged: Family Portraits from the NUS Museum Straits Chinese Collection (NUS, 2013); Sarong Kebaya (Peranakan Museum, 2008, book published in 2014); Singapore, Sarong Kebaya and Style (Fukuoka Art Museum & Shoto Museum, 2016); Port Cities: Multicultural Emporiums of Asia, 1500-1900 (ACM, 2016) Amek Gambar: Peranakans and Photography (Peranakan Museum, 2018). The Mark of Empire, a four-part documentary in which he features as the series’ host, was broadcast regionally by Channel News Asia, Singapore, and uploaded on Youtube.