Chandigarh, Feb 25 (IANS) ‘The Sikhlens: Sikh Arts and Film Festival’ on Saturday witnessed the screening of 12 films from eight countries at the Tagore Theatre here.
The fourth edition of the festival was presented by Pinaka Mediaworks and Rolling Frames Entertainment, and was supported by the Chandigarh Administration, the Department of Cultural Affairs, the Canadian government and the United Sikh Mission.
The films screened were from India, Canada, the US, the UK, Kenya, Pakistan, Malawi, and Singapore.
Caroline Rowett, British Deputy High Commissioner, said in her keynote address, “Culture and arts connect us in ways that trade and investment don’t.”
She talked about the intertwined culture of the UK and India. She also launched the book trailer of the Sikhlens publications’ biography of Kuldip Singh Bhogal, a former Olympian, titled ‘The Legend of 1972 — Life Hockey & Beyond’.
Besides, ‘Jewels from Sikh Wisdom’ published by Sikhlens Publications was also launched.
The announcement of the Sikhlens in the UK Festival 2023 on June 17 was made by the festival head Ojaswwee Sharma.
The day-long programme was packed with screenings related to Sikh heritage and culture, showcasing and creating awareness for Sikh-centric work from around the world with particular focus on cultural stories related to the Sikh and Punjabi diaspora across the world and the high-spirited philanthropic works.
Exhibitions were up at the courtyard by five artists displaying more than 1,800 heritage artifacts and contemporary art showcasing ancient heritage Sikh artifacts, and art produced by various record-holding artists, and also a foot-artist who creates magnificent artworks using his feet.
The exhibition comprised miniature kites and paintings, Sikh art and artifacts from ancient times, and manuscripts of varied texts in Gurmukhi scripts as well as Persian.
A book exhibition focused on Sikh history, struggle, teachings, and Punjabi literature and language. The area was adorned with walkthrough backdrops, and the annual Sikhlens Calendar 2023, celebrating and promoting the Sikhs’ artistic and cultural heritage.
The audience was welcomed by the founders of Sikhlens — Bicky Singh and Gurpreet Kaur. They shared that the festival brings together various art forms of the rich Sikh heritage on one platform.
“Our vision with the festival this year has been a blend of educating, entertaining, and empowering the mainstream audience along creating awareness for ‘Sikh-centric’ work, to promote and bring out encouraging Sikh stories of history, cultural and linguistic diversity, and philanthropic storytelling and encourage the community to get into films,” said festival head Sharma.