Thursday, January 9, 2014

Light and Life, Subjects and Spaces and more..


Light and Life
(Work by Swaraj Das)
Swaraj Das, a talented artist will display his range of works at an exhibition titled 'Light And Life' at Open Palm Court Gallery of India Habitat Centre, New Delhi. The artist will present some amazing works in acrylic and oil. The painter has made a niche for himself at a young age.
Swaraj is a unique painter. He believes in erasing the paintings to create new ones. He creates some amazing artwork pieces by making use of overlapping and melting colours which later transform into one single colour.

He is adept at creating unique figurative and abstract paintings. His works have been displayed all across the globe and have appreciated by one and all.
The show is on view till 10th January 2014.

Maya Kamath Memorial Awards

(Maya Kamath Memorial Award show)
The Indian Institute of Cartoonists, Bangalore calls for entries for a competition open to all cartoonists, ‘The Maya KamathMemorial awards’.  The participants may send a maximum of three cartoons. 

The various awards are Best Political Cartoon Award, Best Foreign Cartoon Award, Best Budding Cartoonist Award. The award prizes range from Rs. 5,000- Rs. 25,000. The last day for sending the cartoons this year is 5th of March. The results will be announced in April 2014.

Subjects and Spaces
(Work on display)
Moon River design store, New Delhi is hosting an exhibition by Tasveer arts which is based on vintage photographs. Tasveer is delighted to present an exhibition of vintage photographs ‘Subjects and Spaces, Women in Indian Photography’. 

This rare exhibition showcases the portrayal of women in Indian photography from the 1850s to the 1950s and presents a unique selection of images from the archives of the Tasveer Foundation, including studio portraits, film stills, post cards, cabinet cards and lobby cards. These various photographic mediums take us on a journey from colonial studies of Indian women in the 19th century, to private studio portraits from the early 20th century, and then to iconic and glamorous photographs of Bollywood actresses from the 40s and 50s. The exhibition therefore offers a unique insight into the social and cultural milieu of one of the most renowned periods of Indian history.

The show is on view till 5th February 2014.

Childhood Expressions
( work on display)
Hirji Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai presents acclaimed senior artist Lalitha Lajmi’s solo show of her recent works.

Deriving inspirations from her childhood days, the expressions have been surrounded around the cinema of those times.

Using the ‘clown‘ figure as a metaphor, the artist has conveyed her subconscious mind in the water colour works. 

The show is on view from 15th January to 21st January 2014.

( News reports by Sushma Sabnis)

Women in pink saris
(A still from Nishtha Jain's film 'City of Photos')
This week, filmmaker Nishtha Jain will be screening two of her documentaries in Hyderabad — Gulabi Gang that narrates a complex story of feminism and City of Photos in which she leads us into dingy neighbourhood studios giving shape to small and large picture-perfect dreams.
Gulabi Gang has already been screened in international film festivals and Nishtha is working towards a mainstream release in India this February through PVR Directors Rare. Like many independent filmmakers, Nishtha too is fighting what she calls a losing battle — to find funds for her work and make some of her films trickle into mainstream space. Despite financial hurdles, she wants to explore stories of real people.
When Nishtha first heard of Sampat Pal and her Gulabi Gang in 2008, she was surprised. “This movement began in a backward region like Bundelkhand and the gang had 70,000 members in 2008. Now they are over 400,000. Most women are uneducated, have limited exposure beyond their homes and fields and come from lower strata of society,” says Nishtha, who was taken in by their organisational skills and how the women, led by Pal, questioned patriarchy.
(A still from Nishtha Jain's film 'Gulabi Gang' showing Sampat Pal (right, seated)
The filmmaker shot for 45 to 50 days in Bundelkhand between September 2010 and February 2011, when the gang was 150,000-member strong and led by 13 commanders in different districts. It wasn’t going to be a simple story of revolution. Many women, explains Nishtha, were in different stages of understanding and exercising their rights. “The women I observed were in varied stages of consciousness and empowerment. There’s a difference between preaching idealism and putting it to practice. Some women of the gang had their own troubles at home” says Nishtha.
Nishtha observed the members of the gang taking up cases pertaining to dowry deaths, sexual assaults, women scorned for inter-caste marriages and beyond the boundaries of feminism, looking into day-to-day issues like non-issuance of ration and BPL cards. “The women were such a rallying force, travelling in unsafe areas armed with their lathis,” says Nishtha.
(Filmmaker Nishtha Jain)
Initially, the gang came under flak for using the lathi. Though the women still travel with lathis, they do not give in to violence. “Women use the lathis for self-defence; older women also use them as walking sticks,” smiles Nishtha.
Her earlier films Lakshmi and Me and At My Doorstep drew viewers’ attention to people commonly overlooked — the dhobi, watchman, house-helps and garbage collectors. “I didn’t want these films to point fingers at certain sections; I wanted them to be self-reflective of how we take people for granted.”
City of Photos, on the other hand, steps into boxy neighbourhood studios. “We pass by such studios each day and don’t know how much comes out of these small spaces,” she says. As an extension of this idea, she also completed a film titled Family Album shot in Kolkata, tracing memories and stories behind family albums.
Now, Nishtha is working on three documentaries and a fiction.
(Report by Sangeetha Devi Dundoo for The Hindu)

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