Aug 27, 2009

On Expedition : Towards Bazaars of ‘Old’ Delhi

There comes another day. We all were out on a small expedition, to explore the Bazaars of ‘old’ Delhi. To begin with, the space where it started; we entered a Metro station, a sophisticated architectural space that staged us in a condition of drastic contrast between the interior and exterior of the city. When we reached Chawri Bazaar Metro station the contrast became denser, we walked out of this modern under-ground architectural space with the help of escalators and entered the ‘Choti Gallis’ (tiny streets) that are deeply crowded and awfully organized in their own way. These Gallis in a larger sense stand as memoirs of the city’s history, a spectacle of the city that has unique ambience. The streets with electricity poles that run one after the other, with wires hanging, intersecting and overlapping and specifically the orange boxes hanging to each pole add to its architectural beauty.

Passing from these Gallis our way lead to different Bazaars like Chawri Bazaar, Kinari Market and explored diverse variety of things they offer. The bazaars are interesting sites that stand as a collective, and provide things of similar type and variety. The heavily crowded Gallis, always with the voices of cycle rickshawala’s asking for the way (bhayyaji side……), made momentary interactions possible. Well all were tired and had a break for lunch with the delicious food the Dhaba offered and proceeded with exploration. This time the interest was for paper and thus proceeded to the bazaar where we get varieties of paper, finishing which, we headed to the metro station to get back.

The notion of ‘old’ city seems to be a problematic, as to, what this notion of ‘old’ is all about, as though these spaces are outside the ambit of transformations in the so called ‘new’ city. The concept of ‘old’ somehow freezes these spaces as mere memoirs of past history, thus distancing them from the ‘new’ idea of the city and its functioning. Within these contexts there is a necessity to critically look at the aspect of ‘old’ city as a construct and understand its relevance within the current day formations of the city.

This small expedition was a completely new experience for some of the participants of the residency, especially those who came from outside India, as it is a new idea of space, architecture and the city as a whole. For the others who are already familiar with these spaces, it was definitely a re-thought.

Aug 24, 2009

Beyond Boundaries

Cutting across diverse disciplinary paradigms, this International Residency deals with the idea of Bookmaking in general and Artist's books in particular. It is to critically re-think about the very structure of book, both in terms of its physicality and functionality. This is also an attempt to introduce new understandings of Bookmaking that forth come when artists from diverse disciplines such as Graphic Design, Advertising, Animation, Painting and Architecture unite. In another sense, this residency is a platform where cross-cultural affiliations occur, as artists come from different geographies and more importantly from diverse cultural backgrounds. These Intersections are ought to bring forth new cultural expressions, extending their enquiry to broader contexts.

In the year 2009, Khoj is looking to engage with the idea of design from its most obvious usages in industry and object design to its most abstract form and how these aspects can be explored in art making/ visual arts in various ways. In continuing with this thematic, this residency focuses on Bookmaking with a strong underpinning of design in all its various aspects.

To introduce the artists, Logaine Navascues studied Advertising in Lima, Peru, and has worked as a creative director, editor and designer. As a reader, writer and permanent seeker, she wants to re-think the book, experimenting with new formats and approaches to reading. Sebastian Cordova is an Architect based in Mexico; he sometimes participates in art related contexts with lots of narrative appetite. Aditya Pande is based in New Delhi and studied at the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad. His studio production oscillates between the fine and applied arts, two and three dimensions, the sensuously tactile and the aggressively optical. Sachin George Sebastian is a graduate in Graphic Design from National Institute of Design and works as a freelancer based in Delhi. As a paper engineer he loves to sit with paper all the time exploring the structural possibilities of the same. Meghana Bisineer is a graduate from the RCA London. She is a freelance animator, artist consultant on cross discipline projects and also a part-time tutor at the RCA London. Sukanya Ghosh is a painter and animator, she pursued painting from Faculty of Fine Arts, Baroda and Animation from National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad. She currently works as a freelance practitioner based in Kolkata.

Thus, having artists from different regions and cultural backgrounds, this residency in short, is an attempt to think beyond boundaries by intersecting, operating and overlapping diverse cultural and disciplinary understandings with specific reference to Bookmaking.