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Why I do what I do

This website will give you a glimpse into my work as an artist,  community builder and activist. I have been negotiating the world through the lens of a creative entrepreneur for the last two decades. It's been a wonderful journey with a lot of learning and collaborating with people I deeply respect.
In the coming years, I believe that creative thinkers will be crucial to document, stitch, hold and present the world. We are at the very edge of collapse on one side, and of a future that can spin out into unimaginable wonders on the other. I believe we can get to the happier side by working together!

Meet Archana Prasad

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November 21st, 2007

I was accepted as a scholar at the Kanoria Centre for Arts in Ahmedabad mid 1996 right after i got my BFA in Painting at CKP, Bangalore. The exposure there to senior artists from across the country was immense and encouraged me to continue my pursuits in the area of fine arts. 6 months later I was excepted into the Masters program at the CIAS, Bangalore. Here for two years I studied art theory and wrote a dissertation titled ‘Photography and the Avant-Garde in Art’. Alongside my MAsters program I apprenticed for a senior photographer – Sudhir Ramachandran during this time to better understand the practice of photography.

My interests in the visual medium next drove me to learn the secrets of animation at the Masters level program at National Institute of Design (NID), Ahmedabad. A lot was learned and a lot more unlearned. This was my first extended stay away from home and family and the impact of that and the highly creative environment at NID was rather eventful. ‘Aasae – Desire’ and Clear Blue were the two animated films that constituted my final projects here, and are definitely worth a peek to get a glimpse of my psyche then. Also sneak a peek at my on-air promos work with Channel [V] where I worked as an intern – it as a bagful of fun!

Next I packed my bags and set out to explore life as an independent artist and designer. ThoughtFox – a design collaborative was thus born. Some of my most interesting work includes designing Educational Toys – a project for the Crafts Council of Karnataka and the Development Commissioner for Handicrafts, Delhi. Website design and CD artworks for Still in Transit – a music and film project. As well as collaborative projects with Ruhi Sridhar in Bangalore and Sandhya Kurushingle’s Graycell Design in Cochin.

I joined Microsoft Research India in 2004 and worked there as a design researcher to understand creative uses of technology for emerging markets. Two important projects from this phase are StandingoOnFish – an SMSBlogging project which really meshed my interests in art, people and technology in a very rather unique way, and ViVoTe Mail which studied the use of an email client by completely illiterate first-time computer users.

All along I maintained two very strong interests – poetry and video projections. I have with me a series of 16 books of poetry and sketches from 2003 to present. My secret desire is to get these published.

My interest in video has me shooting a lot of video footage while i travel and then using them in live shows. I guess you could call me a VJ (video jockey). Essentially I mix and project live video edits from my laptop. So far I have worked exclusively with a Bangalore post-rock band – Lounge Piranha and am now getting very interested to explore how video projections can be used in installations, theater and other performance art-forms.

To sum it all up, I am now a full-time independent artist. My primary love is painting and is augmented with my interests in research, film, poetry and technology. I am always interested in collaborative, creative projects – so 3For is right up my alley.

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  • hey dear, you’ve done stuff!

    But it will be interesting to know what made you decide to concentrate and create art.

    Its all three of us now, and that is thanks to you!!

  • Hey archana, all your travels, exposure to people in various fields, and work in photo and video – all that is a wonderful, and solid background. I would love to see how you make the transition to painting. Example, questions to ask.. How will you bring your experience in video and photo to the canvas. I think also, love of poetry..why not combine it with painting. write on your canvas! sometimes words combined with imagery can be such a powerful thing. I have things that I have written as well that I feel are so significant to my images, to my state of mind right now, that I am definitely considering incorporating that into my work. Its all art, and they dont have to be mutually exclusive. no? So exciting! Opens up the doors to so many possibilities! Very excited for you. Think that you are in a wonderful place- ready to dive in!

  • girls thanks much for the feedback!

    i agree pooj – somehow all the things that each of us have done in the past 10 years is going to define the way we create, think about and understand our paintings. it is experiences that build our perspective…provide us with a frame by which we view the world.
    i love the idea of text – poetry in painting. in fact some work i did (actually my bathrooms’ 4 walls) has a lot of that thrown in….will post in some pics of that at my site and point u guys to to soon…