Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir) [India]: Kashmiri ”paper mache” artist Maqbool Jan is making an old map of the Srinagar region, which he wants to be displayed in the Indian Parliament.
Maqbool, an award-winning artist, is famous for his “paper mache” artworks. It is an art form that’s not only popular in Kashmir but also has a huge demand worldwide.
Maqbool is now making an old map of Srinagar on a 5 x 7 ft cloth using the “paper mache” technique.
“I saw this map in a book and now I’m drawing it on a cloth. It has been 20 years since I have been painting on cloth. I am registered with Kashmir Handicrafts. I aim to pave the way for employment for youth through this art. Tourists will come and buy this art from artists.” said Maqbool.
He added that he wanted to show the old beauty of the region through his map.
“Dal lake is world-renowned. Every tourist who comes here expresses a desire to visit the lake. The lake was beautiful and the water could be used for drinking. We have to focus on keeping alive what we have inherited. I want to show how Dal Lake and Jhelum used to be, how our region, its shrines, mosques and water bodies used to look like in the older days. It is a shame what we have done to our water bodies today,” said Maqbool.
He has been working for a year on the map and it will take another 1-2 months to complete it.
Maqbool would also like the map to be displayed in Parliament.
“My desire is that this map is displayed in the Parliament. Because a lot of decisions on the Kashmir region come from there. This map will remind them of the heaven that our Kashmir is, they’ll be reminded of this region and its culture. This will give a boost to artists and tourism and enable the new generation to get involved in the betterment of Kashmir,” added Maqbool.