An Lanntair, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis

Engaging with people, stories, journeys, collections, culture, art and literature. The original inspiration for the festival and ongoing arts exchange project is Stornoway born Colin Mackenzie and his extraordinary collection of South Asian Arts and antiquities.

The Mackenzie Collection is the axis for the project and also provides the context, meaning and inspiration for the creative collaboration between artists.

Through the collection An Lanntair aims to give artists the opportunity and platform to share, collaborate, learn and make new works in response to The Mackenzie Collections and the cultural exchanges provided through the project and festival.

The ‘Colin Mackenzie Collector Extraordinaire’ exhibition proposed as a major part of the Purvai Festival 2017 will raise awareness of this important part of Scotland’s heritage. 2017 also marks the 70th anniversary of Indian Independence; officially announced last year to be a year of cultural events to celebrate the vibrant history between India and the UK. The Mackenzie Collection sits amongst this history in both India and Britain as an important documentation of that shared history. From the heart of London, to the far reaches of the Outer Hebrides, the Mackenzie Collection exhibition would be a commemoration and a demonstration of the diversity and depth of the shared history between India and the UK. It will be a catalyst for awareness, appreciation and interpretation of this underutilized collection at this appropriate historic anniversary.

An Lanntair will have world class performances of artistic collaborations which have been commissioned through the project such as a unique cultural and spiritual heritage composition by musicians and composers Calum Martin and Dalbir Singh Rattan of Gaelic Psalm singing and Indian Rags.

Another special music composition will be developed exploring the history of Scottish Ceòl Mòr bagpipes, Musician Iain Morrison will be working with B.L.O.T, a Delhi based duo, producing an extraordinary mix of electronica, dance beats and kaleidoscopic imagery.

2017 festival will also feature a photography and archival exhibition with Edinburgh Based photographer Arpita Shah.

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