A first-of-its-kind media festival hopes to make video art by contemporary Indian artistes accessible to you.
A five-day, weekends-only festival is set to showcase video art by contemporary Indian artists. VAICA or Video Art by Indian Contemporary Artists will feature some of India's foremost artists including Ranbir Kaleka, Navjot Altaf, Shakuntala Kulkarni, Anuradha Upadhyay and Manmeet Devgun. It comprises 65 video works by 35 artists, curated by Bharati Kapadia and Chandita Mukherjee. "It's a platform for anyone who wants to know what's happening with the [video] medium and how artists are articulating through it," Kapadia says.
The idea came to her when she was introduced to the medium recently and got curious about where to find more. "Their work exists on their websites but if you didn't know where to look, you could get lost." Kiran Nadar Museum of Art was among the first to respond and willing to share the budget, too. They even offered to host it in their auditorium. Jehangir Nicholson Art Foundation provided the remaining funds and a venue for screening. The curators say they were looking for videos with the potential to leave an impact on the viewer and a capacity to retain their interest. So, while some works are montages of different techniques, others—such as an interview with one of India's first women photojournalists, Homai Vyarawalla—are in the realm of documentary filmmaking.
Kapadia explains the difference between films and video art by drawing an interesting analogy. "A film usually involves characters, dialogue, and tends to have a linear logic. Video art is like watching the sunset. You don't ask what's happening, you're simply responding to the experience."
Secret Fire by Jeetin Rangher
Because Kapadia and Mukherjee wanted single channel screenings, the festival will be held across a variety of venues.
Where: Visitors' Centre, CSMVS on November 9 and 16; G5A Foundation for Contemporary Culture on November 23; Godrej India Culture Lab on November 30.
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