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TURBANOLOGY LARGE PRINT LABELS Introductory Panel (not in London) Imagine living in a world where, whenever they wanted,

every man and woman could wear a crown. What would your crown be like? There is a real community that wears a crown or Dastaar in not just our society but every climate and country in the world the Sikhs. For thirty million Sikhs, fashion has followed faith down through the centuries and now many styles of turbans can be seen. The Turbanology exhibition artfully catalogues the different types of Dastaar that Sikhs wear. We also explore why the right to wear a turban is central to the

Sikh faith. Today there are many growing misunderstandings and misrepresentations of this aspect of Sikh identity. Turbanology dispels the myths and unravels the real culture and heritage making up the Sikh Dastaar. We want you to be a part of the show send in your pictures, have your say and suggest more turban styles and stories for us to feature via www.turbanology.info Director Jay Singh-Sohal Curator @SumOfAllForms The Turbanology name brand and concept are solely the intellectual property of Jagjeet Singh Sohal. MATERIAL WITNESSES (hangings)

1. The Head and the Heart The long piece of cloth that makes up a Sikhs turban has a sacred purpose, since to preserve and keep hair clean and uncut is a religious duty. But turban is only the English name for any kind of Eastern headdress. Its a word thats interwoven with three hundred years of European myths and stories: its not the word that Sikhs use themselves. For a Sikh, a turban is never a hat but always a crown or Dastaar. A European crown is traditionally made of valuable metal and precious stones, to be carefully preserved, inherited; coveted. A linen dastaar is simple, clean and practical. It requires pride and a sense of purpose to tie and must be freshly folded each day. This is why a

Sikhs turban always represents spiritual wisdom as much as worldly power. Following Sikh principles of equality, women may also wear the dastaar. Every Sikh will tie one individually, with many practical variations for worship, work and sport. With the dastaar around the head, a Sikh cannot hide his faith or his identity as a Saint-Soldier. The turban is a visible and constant reminder to be truthful, honourable, courageous and help those in need. 2. Twists and Turns Turbans are worn in many world cultures as practical or symbolic headdresses. But for the Sikhs, the turban is an article of faith central to their spiritual ethos and code of conduct. Their reasons are rooted in the 300 year history of the founders of Sikhism the Gurus.

The first Guru Nanak Dev traveled across India and the Middle East in the 15th century, debating with many Hindu sadhus and Muslim fakirs. For these diverse communities, the turban was a shared symbol of saintly wisdom connecting man to God. The Gurus saw the turban as much more, the sixth Guru, Hargobind, adapted the turban to the martial tradition of the Warrior-Saints by making it larger, stronger and suited for the battlefield. In 1699, the tenth Guru, Gobind Singh, created the Khalsa an order of initiated Sikh men and women at Anandpur in the Punjab. The turban was from then on to be worn as a constant reminder of the sovereign and independent nature of the Sikhs, and that each Sikh is a distinct and constant representative of the Guru.

Every Sikh will aspire to wear a turban whether devout or practicing. 3. Rise of the Sardars The early Sikh nation found itself under attack from all sides. The enlightened era of the Sikh Gurus gave way to one of bloodshed. Now, Sikhs were hunted down for bounty by Mughal emperors and invading Afghans alike. The Turban was a true mark of the Gurus disciples. Many Sikhs lost their heads while proudly keeping their crowns. The Sikhs new leaders the Sardars had to be daring and astute in both strategy and politics as their nation strove for continued existence.

The Sardars built a nation in accordance with the principles of their independent, revolutionary faith, with self-discipline

and comradeship. Banda Singh Bahadur was tasked by the Guru to seek justice from the Mughals. He built the first Sikh Kingdom and struck coin in the name of the Guru before his capture and martyrdom in 1716. To defy the enemy, Sikh militias unified into one body the Dal Khalsa under Nawab Kapoor Singh. When Afghan raiders invaded India, the Sikhs organised again into defensive fighting clans Misls to better protect people of all faiths.

Jassa Singh Ahluwalia led one Misl, becoming Sultan-ul-Quam (King of the Community) in 1748. As supreme leader of the Sikh Confederacy he wore a Kalgi (plume) on his Turban, a sign of royalty and honour. But not only for rulers every Sikh that wears a Dastaar has a real regal heritage, and adorning it with

precious jewels and expensive fabric embodies pride as a representative of the True King and Father of the Khalsa Guru Gobind Singh. 4. Crown of Kings The Sardars continued to fight for the survival of the Sikh nation, but they couldnt stop the Punjab from sliding into lawlessness. Invaders and bandits kept villages cut off and isolated; poverty was rife and few towns prospered. The Sikhs had grown too used to fighting guerilla wars and the misls argued amongst themselves for superiority and position. The time had come for a leader to re-unite them. The head of the Sukerchakia misl Maha Singh had the enough ambition and vision. But when he died in battle at 26, it was left to his ten year-old son to

complete his mission. His name was Ranjit (Victory) and he was to grow into a masterful soldier and strategist. Powerful Sikh families he united through marriage, the weaker ones he overpowered. And by an exchange of Turbans he made brothers out of his rivals. In 1801, Ranjit became the leading Sardar when he was invited to take Lahore. He called himself Singh Sahib but never crowned himself Maharaja his Turban was his crown. Ranjit laid the foundations of sustained peace and prosperity for the Punjab, and over the next four decades he consolidated and expanded his Kingdom. But soon the Punjabs wealth and natural resources would attract the attention of a new powerful suitor the British Empire. 5. Divine Law, Human Law

When tales of wartime bravery were told, the Sikhs became known all over the world as warriors. But as manual labourers? As shopkeepers? As bus conductors? Sikh settlers in Britain were rarely shown the respect they had enjoyed as students or soldiers. Discrimination against the Sikh religious identity became a feature of 1960s Britain. State-run public transport depots banned conductors, guards and drivers from wearing beards and turbans. These bans were fought and overturned by the trade unions, workers associations and by fair-minded individuals who remembered the Sikhs wartime sacrifices. 1969 was the year Wolverhampton and Nottingham scrapped their turban bans, and Daya Singh Nibber became Birminghams first turbaned railway guard. Seven years

later, turban-wearing Sikhs were gained exception from compulsion to wear safety helmets on motorbikes and building sites. But without full legal protection, wearing a turban could still count against any Sikh applying for a job or school. In 1983 Sewa Singh Mandla fought a ban on turbans at his sons Birmingham school. The Sikh community organised protest marches and petitioned politicians across the country. After losing their case at Birminghams law courts, the House of Lords ruled on appeal that wearing a turban was each Sikhs right. 6. Last Maharaja, First Ambassador The British learned the true significance of the Sikh turban through the example of one man; Duleep Singh. Arriving in Britain as a boy in 1854, he became a

favourite of Queen Victoria and lived the comfortable life of a stylish celebrity aristocrat. But he was also a prisoner. Following two Anglo-Sikh Wars, Britain finally controlled the Indian subcontinent and Duleep Singh was the last Maharaja of the annexed Sikh Empire. With its gift of the priceless Koh-i-Noor diamond, the Punjab provided the literal jewel in the crown of the British Empire. Duleep youngest son of the Lion of the Punjab became a hostage against future instability. The exiled prince was allowed his royal status and would wear his elegant, jewel-encrusted turban to state and royal occasions. Duleep and his Sikh retainers were depicted and discussed favourably in the Victorian media. Later Duleep rebelled against his comfortable captivity. Inspired by tales

of India from visiting Sikh relations especially his mother, Maharani Jinda, he attempted to regain his lost heritage. But Duleep had few, if any, of the qualities of his famous father. The British outmanoeuvred him at every turn, and he died penniless and unhappy in France. 7. Fierce Warriors, Staunch Allies After the Anglo-Sikh Wars, the British were so impressed by their opponents fighting valour they found a role for them in the Raj. Dispatched to the Empires unruly North West Frontier, the Sikhs fought bravely throughout what we now call Afghanistan, remained loyal during the India Mutiny in 1857 and fought to the last man at Saragarhi in 1897. Lauded in the Victorian press, the heroic exploits of Sikhs became the talk of

drawing rooms and playing fields across the world. But the real test of Sikh valour came during the Great War. Remaining true to their reputation as steadfast warriors, thousands of Sikhs volunteered to fight in Flanders, Gallipoli, Suez, Kilimanjaro and Baghdad. Sikhs wore turbans under fire; many later finding bullets in the windings. During the Second World War, Sikhs fought in Burma, Italy and the Middle East, won medals and commendations and even served as bodyguards to Sir Winston Churchill. Across both conflicts around 83,005 Sikhs were killed and 109,045 wounded. A century of sacrifice gives Sikhs an enduring fame in British military history. Today, images of Sikh soldiers line the corridors of the Royal Military Academy in Sandhurst. Sikhs continue to serve

Great Britain today in Iraq, Afghanistan and across the world. 8. The Turban Effect As the new millennium approached, a widespread appreciation and understanding of Sikh identity was dawning in the West. But the fruits of fifty years of peaceful, persistent struggle were wiped out overnight on September 11 2001. With the 9/11 attacks the image of bearded, be-turbaned men as Islamist terrorists became fixed in popular culture, with tragic consequences. Sikhs have since been abused, threatened and beaten especially in the Unites States. In Arizona a racist gunman sought out and murdered Balbir Singh Sodhi within days of the Twin Towers attack for revenge. In 2011 two

elderly Sikhs were shot in California while out walking. Sikhs in Europe now find themselves under suspicion because of their Dastaars. Frequently, airport security checks often offer them no dignity. A 2008 study found this prejudice was now widespread and mostly unconscious researchers dubbed it the Turban Effect. In the UK efforts to raise public awareness about the meaning of the Dastaar still continue, three decades after the Turban Rights movement. But Government lobbying and demonstrations cannot match the impact of Sikh pioneers who take their place in popular culture with their Turban-identity intact. These include England cricketer Monty Panesar, 100-year-old marathon runner Fauja Singh and the first Sikh on the High Court circuit, Justice Rabinder Singh QC. Sikh role models are

becoming mainstream breaking boundaries and ensuring people recognise and respect the Dastaar for what it is every Sikhs personal, unique crown.

CROWNED HEADS (Mannequins) The Kenyan How to recognise a Kenyan Dastaar: A smart, ironed and crisply folded layered turban. Colours: Varied; clean white in the tropics, a sedate black in modern corporate environments. The East African Connection: The so-called Kenyan Dastaar is a popular turban with second and third generation British Sikhs. It was first worn in the UK by Sikhs migrating from Kenya and Tanzania, many of whom had filled senior roles in East African society. Judges, politicians, businessmen; their

neat, precise turban style reflected their status as professionals. The origin of The Kenyan is in the formal, folded and pressed style of turban developed as parade dress by Sikhs serving in the British Indian Army. These uniform turbans were smart but also large, making each soldiers silhouette more imposing. The Kenyan style remains in vogue and has become a signature look for British Sikhs. Help us improve our definition of The Kenyan and send in your favourite pictures for inclusion in our show at facebook.com/Turbanology.Sikhs.Unwra pped.Exhibition

The Double-Patti

How to recognise a Double-Patti Dastaar: A double-patti can be difficult to positively identify as the wearer may adapt it into many different styles. It is usually larger than other turbans, with fewer folds and wraps. Colours are sometimes worn to complement shirts, ties, or even socks! One is Not Enough This style of turban is commonly seen in the Punjab, India. The double-patti is named for the two long pieces of cloth which are sewn together into one wide band. The open cloth is wound around the head and formed into a smooth layer while tieing, giving the turban a thick and defined outline. This method enables the wearer to create different

turban-styles according to their preference; rounded out, taller or angled. Help us improve our definition of The Double-Patti and send in your favourite pictures for inclusion in our show at facebook.com/Turbanology.Sikhs.Unwra pped.Exhibition

The Damalla How to recognise a Damalla: These round turbans are traditionally seen in blue or orange; white and other colours can sometimes be spotted. A Damalla is made from two layers; the outer layer sometimes holding weapons and symbols and even symbolic weapons! Winding for a Warrior

The Damalla is the traditional Sikh warrior turban. It cocoons the entire head, offering protection on the battlefield. A Damalla is actually two or more pieces of cloth. The first is wrapped around the hair and ties off the wearers hair into a top-knot. A piece of cloth as long as the wearer wishes is then chosen and wrapped around the head without ironing or folding. The Damalla is the oldest form of turban, worn by the Sikh Gurus themselves. Over time it has come to represent the Sikh Khalsa and the discipline of these Warrior-Saints. The largest Damallas are often seen crowning the heads of Nihangs, fierce warriors, whose modified Damallas are not just turbans but battle standards. Help us improve our definition of The Damalla and send in your favourite

pictures for inclusion in our show at facebook.com/Turbanology.Sikhs.Unwra pped.Exhibition

Ladies Dastaar Equality across Identity Sikh faith has equality at the root women and men are always empowered to worship without any prejudice or restriction. In this way, a feminine counterpart of the Dastaar has evolved, with its own unique styles and variations. Many of the Singhnian (or female Sikhs) who tie a Turban wear a layered Damalla and drape it with a chuni (scarf) to distinguish themselves from their brothers. Beauty personified

A womans Dastaar may look more subtle and perhaps more chic than the masculine counterpart, but the woman who ties one accepts the same strict discipline as a man not to not pluck or cut her hair and to wear the 5 Ks at all times. The discipline is difficult but rewarding. Women who wear a Dastaar have many strong female role models to draw inspiration from including: Mata Sahib Kaur (the Mother of the Khalsa) who played a pivotal role in the Vaisakhi baptism of 1699; and Mata Bhag Kaur (Mai Bhago) who led 40 Sikh deserters back to fight alongside the 10th Guru at the Battle of Muktsar and was the sole survivor against thousands of Mughals. Help us improve our definition of The Damalla and send in your favourite pictures for inclusion in our show at

facebook.com/Turbanology.Sikhs.Unwra pped.Exhibition