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Visiting Dhaka Makers 2

Neha Shamim

After the resounding success of Dhaka Makers 1, which left an indelible mark on Bangladesh’s rising entrepreneurs in the realms of fashion, art, and culture, anticipation for the sequel soared. Presented by City Bank, Dhaka Makers 2 transformed Aloki, a beautiful community center in the heart of Dhaka, into a vibrant hub of creativity on Gulshan-Tejgaon Link Road. Hearing the buzz from Dhaka Makers 1, my friends and I were eager to see what all the excitement was about. Attending Dhaka Makers 2 wasn’t just about experiencing creativity; it was also an opportunity to showcase personality and creativity through fashion. As we navigated through the vibrant crowds, it became apparent that dressing appropriately for this event was significant for most attendees. So, we donned our best outfits and headed to the event.

Entering Dhaka Makers 2 was like stepping into a vibrant carnival of creativity and entrepreneurship. The first thing that caught my eye was the array of pop-up stores lining the venue, where young fashion entrepreneurs proudly displayed their latest creations. Pop-up stores like Dhaka Yeah, Small Giants, Candle & Co, Noya, From Dacca, Flappy Clouds, and many more were present. From chic apparel to intricately handcrafted jewelry, and even a pop-up store called “Footpath” dedicated to thrifted clothes, there was something to suit every style and taste.

But the excitement didn’t end there. As we wandered through the bustling aisles, we discovered a treasure trove of handcrafted stationery, each piece a unique work of art. It was heartening to see these young artisans showcasing their talents and passion for their craft.

Venturing further into the event, we stumbled upon Jadughar, an art exhibition gallery showcasing the diverse talents of artists from across Bangladesh. Featuring over 80 artists, the exhibition showcased various artistic mediums. Artists like A. Asan, Dibarah Mahboob, Faraz Naz Moon, Mehedi Hasan Roby, and many others were featured, each presenting their unique artistic expressions through paintings, installations, ink drawings, performance art, and photography. The artists were equally welcoming and engaged in discussions about their art with curious minds, creating a nurturing environment for creativity to flourish and explore the richness and depth of the country’s artistic landscape.

As the day turned to evening, the smell of warm coffee filled the air as the food pavilion offered a wide range of delicacies such as: Tabaq, Slaw, Garachery, Shei Nihari and many other food stalls to satisfy every kind of cravings of the hungry attendees.  However, the popularity of the food carts also meant that navigating through the crowds could be a challenge at times. Long lines formed at popular carts, particularly during peak hours, as attendees eagerly awaited their turn to sample the delectable offerings.

Meanwhile, young local artists took to the stage to showcase their talent such as Bengal Parampara Sangeetalay, Smooches, Joler Gan and many more. From soulful ballads to upbeat rhythms, the performances were a celebration of Bangladesh’s vibrant musical heritage.

What struck us most about Dhaka Makers 2 was its commitment to giving a platform to artists in every form of art, like fashion, art, music, culture, and beyond. It was inspiring to see such a diverse range of talent coming together in one place, showcasing the best of Bangladesh’s creative spirit.

However, we couldn’t help but notice that the entry fee was a bit of a hassle for some people, and some attendees were upset about the crowd. We couldn’t help but wonder if there could have been a more accessible way for everyone to experience the magic of Dhaka Makers 2.

I believe the event was undeniably a hub of excitement and creativity, the sheer volume of attendees sometimes led to overcrowding and a sense of rush that threatened to overshadow the event’s brilliance. As an introvert navigating through the bustling crowds was challenging for me, with long lines forming at popular attractions and food stalls. At times, the hustle and bustle detracted us from the immersive experience that Dhaka Makers 2 aimed to provide, as attendees jostled for space and struggled to fully appreciate the exhibits and performances. Despite these challenges, the event’s vibrant energy and innovative showcases ultimately dazzled through, reminding us of the boundless talent and creativity that thrives in the heart of Bangladesh. 

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