To celebrate the end of the winter days and to gear up for spring with festivities, Dhaka saw two weekend fairs taking place in different corners of the city. Many people flocked to Dhanmondi's Drik Gallery to attend 'Pousher Pala', while in Niketon, 'Go Deshi', an initiative to support and promote locally produced crafts and goods attracted large crowds.
Pousher Pala was organised by Shorodindo, a youth-centric clothing boutique. The founder and designer is a BFA graduate in Graphic Design from the Faculty of Fine Art, University of Dhaka. She got together some of her contemporaries in the creative field such as Rongmistri, a business specialising in hand-painted crafts and clothes. Other than that, most of the participating vendors and boutiques were also youth initiatives with many of them having their first show in the physical sphere.
Nivanna, a photography agency showcased some of their works featuring brides on their wedding day, family groups and portraits which were framed and hung all around the gallery. The organisers also mentioned that their purpose was not only to sell products but also to create a culturally stimulated space. Live baul music was performed by Nur Alam Siddiki, and live portrait sketching and caricature drawing sessions were also done by art students. There were some food stalls that sold homemade items from the Adibashi cuisine.
At Niketon, Go Deshi offered homemade pickles made from a variety of fruits and vegetables, organic soaps and pure spices with their natural oils preserved such as turmeric and chilli. New mothers shopped for their children from Nerdy Smarty which had popular Bangla phrases, such as Aha Ki Anondo and Fagun Haway Haway printed on their rompers.
Overall, Dhakaites had more than a few events to spend their leisure time in an atmosphere of festivity on the weekends. Fairs such as Pousher Pala and Go Deshi bring people together in a family friendly atmosphere and remind them to cherish the local traditions. It is also refreshing to see the youth of the country dedicate efforts to retain the heritage of Bangladesh.