An ongoing street festival in New Delhi is transforming the bare walls of the city into a walk-in art gallery. In pictures.
By Aditi Malhotra and Enrico Fabian | @WSJIndia
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"Mumbai can drive you crazy. And because (or, perhaps, despite) of this, you want to make sense of it. You want to make some kind of order out of it. And more often than not, in trying to create order, you succumb to the same thing that almost everyone succumbs to, the same trap: you fall for the idea of the “Maximum City”, the chaos, the speed, the heat, the shit, the poor, the rich, all at once, the grand narrative of 17 million people forced to live on top of one another in a city held together by ingenuity, momentum and sheer force of will. You succumb to this because it’s true, to a degree, and because it’s intoxicating, and also because it’s easy. In the overwhelming face of everything it’s easy to say, “all life is here, it’s messy, and it works!” and turn a blind eye to everything else. But it gets kind of boring. And it means that other interpretations are lost.
If you’ve lived or worked in Mumbai in the last five or ten years you’ll have seen the beanbag graffiti: Beanbags 26407383. I saw it once and then, like a new word you learn, I saw it everywhere, on walls, houses, pipelines, metal sheets, flyovers, construction sites, waste-ground. Everywhere: Beanbags 26407383. It was, it is, the work of a beanbag salesman, who had the genius to go out and spray the city with the name of his product and a phone number, at one stroke bypassing the legal, unaffordable marketing mechanisms of the ‘official’ city springing up around him. In the city of commerce, the very fabric of the city became an advertising hoarding. And this is how he made his fortune.
It’s a nice story, but we were interested in something else too. We were interested in the opportunity the repeated motif provided us to look at the city with different eyes, in a different light, away from the “Maximum” view...."
Text : Matthew Parker
In 7 days Third Ear’s Miriam Nielsen met 7 visual artists from the hyped and happening Indian art scene in Delhi.
The works of these artists comment on and interact with the city directly - which is why she asked them to take her to 7 locations in Delhi – to the places that inspire them.
Gigi Scaria places sculptures in transitional spaces in the city and photographs them. Sarnath Banerjee uses the hustlers that hang out in central Delhi as the characters in his graphic novels. B.L.O.T create stop motion animations out of the rich visual fabric of Old Delhi. Aastha Chauhan engages local people in a suburban part of the city in her radio programmes and community projects. Pushpamala N takes us to her “dress-wallah” where she buys costumes and backdrops for her shoots. Rohini Devashers videos and drawings are inspired by science and astronomy. She takes us to the Jantar Mantar an astronomical observatory from 1724 located in New Delhi. Vivan Sundaram creates works out of garbage, with the trash collectors who live at the periphery of the city.
Each of them open our eyes to this fast changing city, and its vibrant art scene.
"The crowds were filing in now, small men casting long shadows that reminded me of Vincent Laforet’s aerial photographs of skaters in New York City. I shot some photos on my phone, instagrammed and tweeted those. In a few minutes they went viral. My caption for one picture was ‘This is Not Tahrir Square’, the sarcasm was missed but the photo was widely retweeted."
Photography and Text by Ritesh Uttamchandani | Open Magazine
More of his work on http://riteshuttamchandani.photoshelter.com
"Anti-clocks is exactly what it sounds like: a rejection of ‘clock time’, of regimented sections of the day. The 12-day festival, which began on Sunday with a wall installation and painting, seeks to engage people through time-themed film, painting, poetry and music. It is organised by the city-based media and arts collective Maraa. Highlights include City As Darkroom, an exhibition of photographs shot in print cameras and developed in public venues (as opposed to rented darkrooms) and The Blackbox, a live sound project set up at Russell Market. The public is also invited to participate in activities such as poetry readings and postcard-making sessions – all related to one’s perceptions of time."
Article by Neha Mujumdar | The Hindu
These photographs are of a city caught between a dream and a nightmare. The images in Dilli Purani Dilli Naye (Delhi Old / Delhi New), made during 2009 and 2010, are experimental in nature - spur of the moment photographs made with a $200 film camera.
Delhi celebrates its 100th anniversary as the capital of India last year. This is a 360 degree view of my life in the Capital, an intimate portrait of my relationship with Delhi, a city going through a period of great change: a mega urban mass that uniquely juxtaposes beauty, opportunity and desire against frustration, darkness and inequality; a capital that trades idioms in fleeting moments, revealing the strange coexistence of those that have and those that do not; a city that is both purani and naye.