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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!

Show: Stepping Up

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October 11th, 2008

Girls ok let’s look at this in steps as Pooj suggested. I think each of us will have to take on some parts so that its all even. On the Logistical front:

1. Cities & Spaces – Bangalore, Baroda, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Hyderabad, Cochin. This would be a south to west section. We will not be covering the center and east. For that we need to touch Kolkatta and Delhi. These could prove to be expensive…lets each start approaching galleries we know and get a feel of what they might charge/take for exhibiting us. for this round, perhaps younger galleries who are well reputed might be the way to go.

I can link with Blore, Hyderabad and Ahm. Nirodh – any mumbai contacts (I have some weak ones that I will anyways push on). Pooj, those that Nirodh and I dont have any pull on, you can start chatting with via email and phone…simply charm them.

2. Catalogue (rope in Sandhya): this is most likely going to happen in the month preceeding the exhibition. The designer will have to start taking excerpts from the blog that are relevant to the exhibits…but we should actually introduce her into the blog already, so that she becomes very familiar with what is going on as things start heating up.

3. Invites & Mailing lists for each city: The galleries will have some reccos on this, but we should start collecting addresses of people who are likely to be interested from now. This include non-arty folks and ppl that bring in other circles of social connections into the mix. Also start thinking of poeple who are mentors, seniors, peers and friends who will be able to give us critical feedack. That’s what this exercise is about no?

Invites should be designed, printed and ready to mail 3 weeks in advance to the show. It should clearly showcase our work and describe the project.

4. Press & Critics: this part is crucial. We need to start forging relationships with journalists, critics and anyone who will be interested to write about us, talk about us, spread the vibe about us. All medias are welcome papers, journals, mags, radio, tv, internet, blogs…

Somewhere down the line, perhaps in Jan, we should all start thinking and writing our messaging pieces in. The story of the project, its goals, its aspirations and its attempt to break new ground and how that has influenced us should be very clear to each of us.

This means also that we have to make a press kit. It would contain docs that clearly give each of our bios, our artist statements, photos of us in addition to write-ups about our work and sample images in High Resolution for printing. These should be mailed over to all the leading papers and channels in each city 10 days prior to the show.

5. The work : Hahaha so now only one small detail remains. How do we envision the show. What are the number of works each of us contributes – perhaps we should each look at it as x feet of wall space to do with as one chooses. That way if you are working on large format works, you need not have as many as the smaller format ones. Do we organise them chronologically or artist-wise. Do they interact with each other, or do we look at it as 3 seperate mini-exhibitions in one space?

6. Bring in a Curator: If we want to have a show with a difference, we should have someone who will look at each work and weave a cohesive story. Someone who is smart, trained and passionate about this project. In the case that that person doesnt materialise we should be able to do this on our own. But essentially, we should design it such that the works follow the infulences and discussions on the blog. have written and photo excerpts from the blog pasted next to the work to add and create the context. Perhaps Sandhya herself can do this as she will be designing the catalogue? Perhaps we can invite one other girl (nirodh your MFA friend) who can help with this part? I can really see this in my head, and I do believe that taking the fact that this work was through collaborating by writing and pictures out into the exhibition will be very interesting for the viewers…what say?

Eg. Imagine a completed work by Pooj hanging on the wall. Near it on the side are a set of 4 photos that clearly show the progress of the work. below the photos is just one sentence said by any of us that captures the mood or the direction of that work. Next to this work is Nirodhs work. The photos and statement show that this work was concieved and executed while the previous one was in progress. So on and so forth…

NOTE: All this means that the works that we want to put up will have to be completed a good ONE month before the show. This is so that the exhibition an the catalogue can be designed. Both these parts are really important to the concept and are entirely dependent on the blog data on the the exhibited work. Which means if Pooj is going to buy her tickets for end March. The works for the show should be done and submitted in by End Feb.

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  • WOW! loads of stuff to take care of!
    Ok, cities, spaces.. cochin and chennai. i think sandhya will know people there. i will look into it though. hey- would pearl be able to help out with cochin?
    time factor – you want to do april??
    fine with me… got to commit though on a mth – all of us.
    i think its a good idea to allocate space in terms of x feet for each of us. this seems simplest.
    i think the first thing that neesd to be done – is to get space. second – get cracking on the work- common threads? ideas anyone?

  • yeah lots. I guess if you and i agree for April – that means the month is confirmed no? 2:1 democratic process :)

    that would be perfect and will give us time to start pushing for gallery spaces…

    also I will be meeting a Khoj International rep tmrw. this was about my Snakes & Lotuses video art and poetry exhibition – I will put in a plug for 3For for the month of April.

    Spaces ARE the first step. but…im thinking to get the spaces we need to have work to show. so lets get a little portfolio of each of us + artist statement etc.

    funny chicken and egg situation. Without our work in place we cant get a space to exhibit, without the space confirmed we cant really plan our work. grrrrrr.

    …o and yes nirodh aka nirali will be shot multiple times by both you and me.

  • ooo and lets leave pearl out of this – i think she is from ooty not cochin no?

    i suggest sandhya. also will you pooj call sandhya and get her interested in the blog ideas..i know she is headed off to dubai shortly – so lets get her timeline in place.

    if she is not up for it we will have to get another designer on board – my suggestion is Smita – she’s supa talented, knew rach well and has a painting bachelors so can understand painters. in fact i think she’s make a great fit as she is in blore and i can chase her :) but Sandhya clearly gets first preference.

  • i will get on it arch!!
    hey- good luck with Khoj- i’m sure you’ll blow the guy away!

  • hey, it all sounds v cool. Tomorrow, I should send a detailed mail/post about what I think… right now, I am outside in an internet parlor, to post some painting photographs. It shall close soon
    Just briefly, I think we should curate the show ourselves, unless we get someone really good. About finding galleries and all, I think, I shall make a list of galleries, and send it… and yes then we can disscuss.
    Hey Arc, how did the khoj thing go