The Khasi artistic tradition | Highland Post

As stated earlier, the Khasi community is devoid of any tradition of visual art and the current generation of Khasi artists will be responsible for creating a certain visual identity that could be termed as Khasi art, otherwise most artists are generals in their image. otherwise ordinary creative effort. Therefore, certain distinct visual images could be created that will reflect Khasi folklore, which will not happen overnight as the refinement process has to be articulated in earnest, without an iota of outside influence. However, this exercise might require additional research, discussion, critical analysis with resourceful people, cultural representatives, shamans, traditional practitioners of various folk customs, and even religious rituals and ceremonies.

In this regard, two young artists, Afreen Kraipak Khyriem and Naphisabiang Khongwir seemed to have been more engaged with a different perspective. They formed the North East Art Initiative, which looks more like a movement for the positive development of artistic practice than an organization of events. During the lean season of the Covid 19 pandemic, they conducted regular online deliberations involving resource persons from different parts of the North East region of India, especially from the home state of Meghalaya . Both are very articulate and well versed in the relevant topic they have covered in discussion and interaction with attendees. Moreover, the engagement of veteran artists and young artists offers a synthesis of mature ideas and contemporary innovative elements. Several thought-provoking topics were covered during the literary events and some of the important themes include cultural nationalism, Swadeshi and Western orientation, an introspection into the first Indian War of Independence and some other wide-ranging issues relating to art. . and the region. North East Art Initiative aims to bring together artists, writers and scholars in an integrated space where artistic discourses, nuances of artistic perception, art appreciation and art education are celebrated. He has endeavored to draw attention to this region of India by taking a close look at the range of untapped and overlooked talents that make up the North East. We are an online digital art gallery and art community. The online art gallery allows artists to share a platform to showcase their artwork. NEAI has also presented writers and scholars of art and artistic and cultural research and writings through interactive art lectures, seminars, curated art exhibitions, including arts education seeking to achieve a wider audience of people from the region who may be unfamiliar with artistic techniques and appreciate in order to bring out a coherent discourse on art.

Conclusion: The creation of postmodern expression will greatly assist local Khasi artists in their efforts to invent or discover the distinct identity of Khasi art. It may no longer be possible to discover something vague with mere guesswork; but with dynamic folklore, a new artistic expression representing the Khasi heritage could be invented with a good understanding of ethnic culture and tradition. The cultivation of many materials found in weaving, metalwork, basketry, costumes and ornaments, agricultural and hunting tools, household items and ancient artifacts will provide a vast source of visual images for the creation of any illustration ethnic representing the Khasi heritage. However, the mere incorporation of authentic cultural materials might not be relevant. Therefore, concerted effort is needed to create a method and technique that will suit and convince people of its relationship with the community. It’s like creating a feature of a certain portrait or a bust sculpture of a particular person. Appearance may not be as important as the character of that particular painted or sculpted person. It can be recalled that Benedict Skhemlang Hynñiewta made the clay model of Bull N Lyngdoh through the photos provided by the client and his faint memory of the person. Conversely, it is the factual account I provided myself {Raphael Warjri} and the sketches I drew for further reference to portray his character, which is more pronounced in his function as a student loud and virtuous political leader. It was more difficult in the effort because the images provided by the client were small and blurry and his actual facial appearance lacked the personality of the shrill leader. In the photo, he looks soft and pitiful, but our aesthetic chemistry {Benoît et Raphaël} managed to create a bust statue worthy of his stature. On the contrary, there are other portrait sculptures made by skilled artists with excellent technical finesse of the actual features of each prominent person, but they want the actual character of their stature, even though few of them have the physical features of an exceptional personality.

It is without any intention to belittle the other artists, while their dexterity and their technical performances are imposing and magnificent. It is a question of emphasizing the implication in the work of art as much as on the temperament of social and political obligation which more motivated the collective passion. Therefore, it is important to impress every local Khasi artist, the task of devotion and dedication to the cause, rather than the technical excellence of manual skill. Additionally, the exercise will require patience and rigorous practice with emphasis on the fundamentals of Khasi ethnic heritage. There could be any amount of time and effort to scratch the surface of Khasi folklore, so much so that any other period of time to do thorough research and analysis on the specific topic without any outside influence. The effort is to concentrate and give enough attention to the process, despite the obstacles and limitations, while allowing the gradual germination and constant evolution of Khasi ethnic art in the future. The definition of this character and the trend that will be created in the art world must be open to the intellectual discourse of all the stakeholders in the matter. Over generations, local Khasi artists must sustain the effort and assert themselves with genuine spirit and advocacy to convince the artistic fraternity of universal acceptance of the authentic representation of Khasi national aesthetic uniqueness.

In the modern context, every artist must comprehend and comprehend the real ethnic traits of the community under the onslaught of foreign forces of social changes, especially the enormous influence of Christianity. Although the characteristics of the Khasi culture are dynamic, some elements are diluted with innovations from the dominant tradition. There are instances where local indigenous peoples professing the Khasi ethnic faith unknowingly succumb to the influence or interpretation of other customary practices that are not compatible with ancient customs and traditions. Some of the phrases like “Shyiengkrung” or rip-cage to represent the mating partner, “Khyndaipateng ñiamra” to mean hell or the basement, “Ri Umsnam” to mean a bloodshed nation, “Laiphew Syiem Khatar Doloi” to represent the thirty Khasi chiefdoms and twelve Jaintia dominion, “Jaintia” to correspond to the Pnar people, and even “Hynñiewtrep” to describe the Khasi race, and “U Blei” meaning God are debated over the validity of the terminology. There are many more words and terms that could be diluted or adulterated, and this is a concern for the pictorial illustration that could deviate from the ethnicity of the Khasi community, in the context of the formulation of Khasi ethnic art. Therefore, artists should form a core team to deliberate and interact with Khasi literary, cultural and traditional religious representatives; in addition to resource people throughout the length and breadth of the Khasi territory, which will include shamans, farmers, herbal healers and ordinary citizens.

Moreover, direct translations of English phrases and idioms have been accepted by the masses even though there are more relevant terms in the Khasi language based on some relevant instances of society. The English expression “A tooth for a tooth” or “Eye for an eye” has been translated and used even in the local Khasi media, while the expression “Thlongmluh thlongsying” literally means “A salt in a mortar, a ginger in a mortar”. with extreme enmity or hatred, based on a particular local folklore. There are other instances where artists had to be careful in the effort to depict the authentic elements of the Khasi ethnic heritage, lest the whole exercise be diluted with foreign concepts. In this respect, the core team should be responsible and play a decisive role in handling the situation. Therefore, the involvement and observation of genuine people significantly from the villages will provide ample leeway to maintain a real and reliable source of information with caution on the likely infiltration of foreign elements.

Christopher S. Washington