Lucknow – Capital of Awadh & city of Nawabs

September 18, 2010

Memories of Lucknow (2006)

A Nawab, his perfect hosting, the splendour of Awadh Architecture, a dramatic guide, outstanding kababs, a beautiful Nikaah (wedding) ceremony and amazing antique textiles.

The city today is like any other prosperous town of India – dotted with Malls and the nouveau riche – but the charm of the city lies in the inner city – Aminabad and the inner markets. A leisurely stroll in the gullies and inner markets, reveals the secrets of the city’s past – where dancing girls, poets, craftsmen, masterchefs and literary artists thrived and produced work that wows audiences decades later!

It takes time to ‘see’ the soul of Lucknow – to sit idly with the guides of the Imambada and listen to the story of their life, told at the leisurely pace of one sentence per hour and soaking in the silence, sitting on the steps of the Imambada on a hot still April afternoon.

It takes time to ‘see’ the spirit of Lucknowi ‘andaz’ when the host is a royal Nawab….who, after a first meeting that lasted hours – invited me to his niece’s wedding – to witness the most simple yet spectacular Nikaah ceremony.

Click to view slideshow.

The old city of Lucknow is repressed and hidden under the covers of the new city but it does reveal its charms to those who devote time and energy to seeking out its inner beauty.

Examples of Zardozi – an art associated with this area –  decorating the walls of the Taj Residency Hotel Lucknow, are present in the slideshow.

To view the antique Zardozi in the Wovensouls Collection, click here.

jm

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