Silk River

Silk River

As part of a year-long programme marking the 70th anniversary of Indian independence and the cultural relationship with the UK, Kinetika created Silk River, an ambitious project which explored the unique relationship between London and Kolkata through artistic exchange between communities along the Thames Estuary and India’s Hooghly River.

Ali Pretty, Kinetika’s Artistic Director, collaborated with associate artistic directors Ruchira Das (Think Arts, India) and Korak Ghosh as well as an international team of artists, writers and photographers to capture and interpret the experience of journeying along these two mighty rivers.


Working in 20 locations from Murshidabad to Batanagar (Hooghly) and Kew Gardens to Southend (Thames) we gathered, shared and retold stories of these riparian communities through 20 hand-painted Murshidabad silk scrolls


Silk River culminated in two performative walks –

Along the Thames between 15th – 24th September and

along the Hooghly between December 6th – 16th, 2017.


Silk River was part of Totally Thames that ran from 1-30 September, 2017

Silk River involves organisations in UK and West Bengal who work in heritage, culture, craft, tourism and education. We are delighted that this exciting project is part of the UK India Year of Culture, which seeks to showcase innovative and creative work from both countries, building deeper connections between communities.

Dr Debanjan Chakrabarti, Director British Council East and Northeast India


Silk River Interactive Scrolls

Explore Silk River through the art, images and
reflections of the people that made it possible.

Silk River Souvenir Programme

View the Silk River souvenir programme HERE



April 13, 2018 / Silk River

Southend-on-Sea Exhibition of Scrolls

Having journeyed down the Thames and Hooghly rivers, the beautiful hand painted Silk River scrolls will now be exhibited at the Beecroft Gallery in Southend-on-Sea 2 March - 25 April 2018. 
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Kinetika newsletter March
March 8, 2018 / Silk River

Kinetika newsletter out now

Here's the latest Kinetika and Silk River news, hot of the press!
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Silk River Beecroft Exhibition invite
March 1, 2018 / Silk River

All welcome to opening night of Silk River exhibition 6th March

*Update* Due to adverse weather, the official opening of the Silk River exhibition has been delayed until Tues 6th March 6-8pm.  
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February 16, 2018 / Silk River

Silk River Project Report

Silk River has been an epic undertaking and we're looking forward to the many legacy projects that are beginning to take shape.  Here is the end of project report, which contains an outline of some of the exciting things that happened and the impact of the project. 
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Silk River Film by Mandakini Menon
February 12, 2018 / Silk River

New film by Mandakini Menon

We're delighted that Mandakini Menon has completed the edit of her new film covering Silk River in India.  See it in full here
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Key Dates


April & May: Design workshops

June 5th – 18th: Textile residency in Kinetika studios

September 15th – 24th: Thames Walks

15th Oct – Diwali, Trafalgar Square
22-27th Oct Kew Exhibition
16th Nov – Exhibition, workshop & reprise performance of  Tower Hamlets walk ‘from Street to Stage’


January 7th – 21st: Textile residency in Murshidabad

January 28th & 29th: Murshidabad Heritage Festival, presentation of scrolls

December 6th -16th: Indian Walks


19-31st Dec: Exhibition of scrolls at Victoria Memorial Hall