Thursday, 3 December 2020

Article - AI, Indian Art and the World - Prachi Hota

 Do India's ancient art and craft traditions naturally prepare it for a world where Artificial Intelligence is at the centre of affairs?


Today, Artificial Intelligence (AI) dominates the market to the extent where it influences the socio-cultural fabric of the world. This has led to a shift in the way we form and affiliate ourselves with social groups. There has recently been a lot of discussion about what aspects of human life AI can take over, and whether machines can do everything that humans can. Arguably, creativity is among the few characteristics of human beings that cannot be fully replicated by machines. In such a world then, what role can India with its ancient art and craft traditions play? Vivian Balakrishnan (Minister for Foreign Affairs of Singapore), American philosopher John Searle, economist John Maynard Keynes, psychologist Abraham Maslow and poet and screenwriter Prasoon Joshi, all of whose opinions have been examined here, are some people who can inform the conversation around art and its importance in a highly mechanised world.

Tuesday, 1 December 2020

Anita says...December 2020

 Heal yourself

With the light of the sun
And the rays of the moon
With the sound of the river
And the waterfall
With the swaying of the seas
And the fluttering of the birds
Heal yourself with mint, neem and eucalyptus
Sweeten with lavender, rosemary and chamomile
Hug yourself with the cocoa bean and
A hint of cinnamon
Heal yourself with the kisses that the wind gives you
And the hugs of the rain
Stand strong with your bare feet on the ground
And with everything that comes from it
Be smarter every day by listening to your intuition
Looking at the world with your forehead
Jump, dance, sing, so that you live happier
Heal yourself with beautiful love
And always remember

You are the medicine


- Advice from Mexican healer and poet MARIA SABINA


At the last month of the year, a year that has tested and tried us in many ways, we have arrived at a SANKOFA moment. The mythical symbol of the Akan people of Ghana - the image of a bird with its head turned backward taking an egg from its back. It expresses the importance of reaching back to knowledge gained in the past and bringing it into the present in order to make a positive impact and to move forward.

What have these 9 months of lockdown and forced isolation given us? What have we learned about ourselves and the art that we hold so dearly? How have we faced the idea of our own mortality? How have our memories and the past bolstered or weakened us?

Roving Eye curated by Anita Ratnam - December 2020

 



View the images in the site

Sunday, 29 November 2020

Obit/Tribute - Yog Sunder Desai (1921-2020) - Ashish Mohan Khokar

Delhi: He got up on 27th November morning, asked for juice, sipped it quietly and was gone. What a way to go! For a man almost a century, who saw India from times of pre revival to calling his group Indian Revival Group; meeting pioneers who came to India from abroad like Ted Shawn or Ragini Devi, to learning from a pioneer like Uday Shankar and Kelu Nair; from seeing his royal family in Gujarat surrender all land and titles to cause of India's independence to seeing India get independence in 1947 - he saw all and created dance drama productions based on many such themes.

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Sunday, 22 November 2020

Virtual, with visual variety - The Eastern Eye: Column by Dr.Utpal K Banerjee

Trained by Mamata Shankar in Uday Shankar style and also interested in Western ballet and jazz, Subhajit brilliantly sets off the online series with his solo Jatajuta Samayuktam (youtu.be/pfMqJd8sxuQ) featured earlier in 'Devi Diaries' series hosted by Narthaki.com. Known as the Dhyan Mantra of Durga from Matsya Purana, Jatajuta Samayuktam describes the physical attributes of the goddess: how extraordinarily glamorous she is, what is her complexion like and what accoutrement she has put on. The picturesque locale -- an ancient site of 26 Shiva temples in Khardah, West Bengal crafted in the classic Bengali architecture - comes alive in the dancer's controlled postures and especially in the skillful 'slow motion' camera shots.

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Saturday, 21 November 2020

Shantha Ratii Initiatives presented Sparks - Footloose and fancy free with Dr.Sunil Kothari

Shantha Ratii Initiatives presented the two day Singapore International Dance Day Festival SPARKS on 6th and 7th November 2020 at the SRI studio. It was conceptualized, created and choreographed by Shantha Ratii in collaboration with Singapore Indian Fine Arts Society (SIFAS), Sheng Hong Arts Institute (SHAI). It was sponsored by National Arts Council of Singapore, A.R.T.S Fund, and SG Cultural AnyWay.

Read more in the site

Wednesday, 18 November 2020

Article - Re-imagining the University - Dr. Kaustavi Sarkar

How can one find resilience in loss of livelihood? This article hopes to model an institutional solution to the pandemic by creating communities of practice across sectors - higher education and gig economy. Nevertheless, dance studies and arts policy scholar, Sarah Wilbur critiques "a celebratory stance toward the adaptive resiliency of artists amidst the mass estrangement and economic losses of the present" due to the high risk of exploitation of creative resilience. Noted Odissi artist Sharmila Biswas shouted out a clarion call for the professionalization of the artist fraternity especially in the pandemic induced dilemma regarding the virtual dissemination of performative content. Wilbur and Biswas both point towards artists' rights to make a living through art-making. Artistic content creation and dissemination require entrepreneurial skills.


While discussing the lack of entrepreneurial education in the gurukuls or the Indian classical dance conservatories in the backdrop of arts entrepreneurship as a discipline, Jasmine Pradeep Gajare argues for the need to instill a sense of drive and individual decision making capabilities in students for ensuing successful careers as artists. Gajare proposes the inculcation of entrepreneurial qualities, such as "awareness, sensibility and desire. An awareness of one's own potential and opportunities that either exist or can be created. A sensibility to subtle signs in communities, where dancers and other artists can make their talents and skills meaningful and finally the desire to explore, to realize one's own artistic dreams" (Gajare 362).