Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Workshop_Don't perch, take flight

An interactive workshop using the medium of story telling, conversations and origami; attempting to make children understand the importance of speaking out when they see something bad happening around them and actively executing their opinions.


Pushpi Bagchi


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

When 200 turned up to Say 'I am'

The turn out was much more than we expected and all of us understood the power of Facebook. The walk was beautiful and joyful, no one tried to break the peace. So many people joined us as we walked and even the police were extremely supportive.

However we realized the web as a mobilizing tool is successful for only one section of society. What will it take to get people from all sections of society to fight for their right to declare their own culture? And how can we stop looking at only political parties as the threat, when actually the issue of losing our right to chose our own culture exists in every aspect of daily life?

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Say I am -A performative walk

In light of the recent violence that took place against women in Mangalore and the statements that were made thereafter, its time to say, I am. Indian culture is being defined, strained and subverted by many elements other than ourselves. In an attempt to induce the spirit of freedom, choice and non-violence we invite people from all spheres to join us on a walk on Sunday, the 8th of February, 4 pm onwards. “I am an Indian, this is my culture” is the initial adopted slogan that we hope people will wear in the form of tags or banners. The walk will start from Rest House Road Park, through brigade road, MG road and end at Cubbon Park. There will be two stops on the way, one at Levis Square on brigade road and the other at Barton centre on MG road. During these pauses (that will last about 5 to 10 minutes) and at the end of the walk at Cubbon Park every participant will get into any position that they feel most free in (sit/stand/lean/crouch/lie etc.) as a symbol of disapproval of the occurrence of violence and curbing the freedom of expression. We speak of development and progress, but the struggle for basic freedom and acts of appalling violence, raise the question- Where is India headed? Join us to collectively declare our diverse culture.

Please also confirm your presence on our facebook event group : http://www.facebook.com/editphoto.php?oid=123325230553&success=1&failure=0#/event.php?eid=123325230553

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Protest against the Mangalore event

We don’t need no “Moral policing” We don’t need no “Mind control” The protest started around 4 45 in the evening on Tuesday. Even though the turn out consisted of about thirty people (inclusive of men and women), the combined efforts of slogans and banners, made this an impact-full evening! On the mahatma Gandhi signal as many protested “violence against women” and demanded for “freedom of choice”, we asked the people in cars and autos who stopped at the signal what their stand was on the Mangalore attacks. If they agreed that what happened was wrong we’d give them a pink post-it which was stuck somewhere on the wind shield of the vehicle so that people could see that they supported the cause. Pink post-its soon became a symbol of violence against women for the evening. Most number of vehicles supported the cause, even though certain anti elements condemned the same stand: “Good! It served them right! They shouldn’t have been there.” –said a woman to Mana just before rolling her window up. “We don’t face this problem, our sisters and daughters never go out to pubs; even they shouldn’t have gone, I don’t now about right and wrong but I don’t see any reason why I should support those “kind” of women who go to pubs and get drunk.” Similarly an auto man explained to Urmila. “The intention of the men who beat the girls wasn’t wrong, their intention was right; maybe their approach was wrong.” Another auto man said to Pushpi being unsure of the stand he wanted to take. Other than the few negative remarks most people were more than happy to have this sign of support on their cars or autos and also many encouraged this cause more than willingly.
By Huda

Protest against the attacks on women in Mangalore

Automen in yelahanka by Pushpi and Huda

Our initial aim was to familiarise ourselves with at least a few of the automen within yelahanka as a starting point for future projects that may be able to improve transport situations in the area. We stared by asking Pramod automan (at the sharavati bus stand) which place according to him would be a nice place for students to go in yelahanka. After long thought he deciding the only two places worth going were bhagini restuarant and the huge parks near sterling apartments. He even drew out a map of how one could get there :

Automen in Yelahanka

Monday, February 2, 2009

Talking to auto men...

Huda and I (Pushpi) had an interesting afternoon talking to a few auto men that we could find. Our first auto driver was a man named Raju. We told him that we were doing a photography course and would he mind if we took a picture of him in his auto and if he liked we would print the picture and give it to him the following day. It turned out that he's not from here but had come with someone all the way from JP nagar which is in aouth Bangalore. We took a picture anyway and while walking away I heard him tell another auto driver next to him that their bill by now would've eadily gone up to 300 rupees since they were waiting for their passengers to come.

We then walked up to the auto stand opposite Sharavati and saw a long line of autos but no drivers except one. We tried telling this man the same thing about us and whether we could take a picture of him with his auto. He pretended to not understand anything we were saying as we were talking in hindi and kept shaking his head. We gave up after 10 minutes or so as he was clearly not interested and all teh other drivers had gonr for their lunch break!

I then took an auto home from the road opposite reliance fresh. The guy charged me 40 rupees till Heritage which is the standard rate from there. On reaching the gate i asked him if i could take his picture with his auto. He agreed and even told me what angle to take it from! He also told me to take his number and call him whenever I needed an auto. He seemed nice enough. His name is Pramod.

By Pushpi and Huda

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Radha: 1Shanti Road final Exhibition, Bangalore, India

The culmination of two hard weeks of work by Srishti School of Art students in collaboration with the visiting artists was amazing. The spontaneous show of the installation with fabric, photos, video, sound and live participation with electric and inspiring. The students never expected such a big crowd to show up. The press was there in full attendance and I must thank Kala from Srishti for sending out letters to the press and inviting them to the show. I want to thank Mrs Geetha Narayanan our director for her support in making this workshop happen. I want to thank our students Tanuja, Pushpi, Urmilla, Swati, Saeema, Mrinalini, Anushka, Sumona, Huda, Sauntouni, Elena and Priyanka for doing a great job and also completely enjoying the whole process. I hope you all will be able to use all that you experienced in your final project.
I thank all the Artists who participated, coordinated and gave everything they had for this workshop.Zeenath for starting this workshop without Veronica here. Karoline, Liz, Ana, Vera, Richard, the Maara group, Vinayak, Archana all of these artists gave so much of their time and energy into this project.
Love you all very much. Again many many thanks and we hope to see you end of the year to continue on this project.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Hair braiding at Cubbon Park

Another attempt at feminising the male dominant areas of Cubbon Park. We went around with ribbons and asked people if they would like us to braid their hair. We approached some men and asked them if they would like to do the same for their girlfriend/ sister/ mother.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Interepreting Fear

The inspiration for such intereprataions were drawn from the apporach Ana Paula Albe has taken in her landscape shots of crevices. It just motivated me to see things differently, how to obsereve what we tend to miss regularly. I was walking around the streets and noticed these postered walls, which have been repeatedly and over a period of time been scartched and textured. Just lured me completely, hence made me look at it beyond colours and forms. I was able to discover forms and shapes within them. I could find feelings and emotions, hence i decided to interepret fear through these frames.


Monday, January 26, 2009

Radha:India is celebrating its 60th Republic Day and nothing has changed in the last 60 years

I love my students who are participating in the Fear and Gender workshop.  They are courageous and gorgeous young women with a lot of fire in their belly's specially to stand up for their rights in this fast changing India. India is changing but not the right way for our young women. 

I am sure that all of you have seen the news that young women  were beaten up in a pub and the pub was vandalized by "Moral police" in Mangalore town of India. These so called "Moral Police" were objecting to the women being in the pubs period. This is there way of protesting against the moral degradation of Indian values in young women. I as an Indian woman, I am ashamed to say that we have these so called "Moral Police" in India are all men!

India is celebrating her 60th Republic Day today, the day when India adopted her constitution and therefore a symbol of her emancipation.......... but it will be a long time before she becomes free of bigotry and mindless prejudices. Good job all of you. Love you