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This three-week festival in Mumbai in December will explore artistic expression

Updated on: 01 December,2023 07:27 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Devashish Kamble |

A performing space in the city will host a three-week long festival that explores the construct of boundaries through artistic expression

This three-week festival in Mumbai in December will explore artistic expression

Musician and curator TM Krishna at a previous performance. File pic

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This three-week festival in Mumbai in December will explore artistic expression

What does redefining boundaries mean to you? Much like the concept of boundaries, the answer to the question remains fluid and subjective. For some, it means going beyond the limitations that they set for themselves, or breaking the confines of what society limits them to. For others like Aruvi, scriptwriter of Nooramma Biriyani Durbar, a play that portrays the struggles of the transgender community through food, their mere existence is an act of redefining boundaries. Aruvi, with a host of other artistes who share the passion for reshaping narra­­­tives through art will rendezvous today at Should Art 2023: Boundary, a performing arts festival conceptualised by G5A Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation that promotes contemporary art.

Musicians from the Manganiar and Langa communities will make a return this year
Musicians from the Manganiar and Langa communities will make a return this year

When asked about the defining moment that sparked the idea for its theme, Anuradha Parikh, its artistic director, shares a poignant insight, “It is not one isolated moment, but the compounding of multiple events in the past months that necessitated the focus on the idea of boundary as a theme this year. Today, the world is so much closer, yet it is extremely fragmented and different — in thought, voice, and action.” 

Fellow artistic director Ishan Benegal, who shares this concern, will kick off the festival this evening with the launch of his immersive art installation titled Textures of Sand where visitors can step into a black box-like room to witness the artist’s portrayal of the passage of time, evolution and the concept of oneness using sand.

Ishan Benegal, Tanuj Nair and Anuradha Parikh
Ishan Benegal, Tanuj Nair and Anuradha Parikh

Hidden in the expansive line-up for the upcoming days are performances of puppetry by the Magicians of Kathputli Colony from Delhi, a presentation of contemporary Urdu poetry and its new-age proponents by Javed Akhtar, a cerebral comedy set by Punit Punia, a free writing workshop by Gaysi Family, and a hip-hop street showcase by headed by Tanuj Nair.

“Hip-hop as a culture has always been about growth and opening new doors to artistic and individualistic expression. The culture has brought down global boundaries and made an impact through music, dance and art. Our piece is about five individuals, expression of their personal boundaries and how those boundaries connect them and us to this culture,” shares Nair. We learn that visitors can attend a handful of workshops and performances free of cost. 

This writer couldn’t help but wonder — Can a three-week event nestled in Mumbai’s financial centre really leave a mark in the grand scheme of things? TM Krishna, resident curator, assures us that no effort goes unseen. Sharing a hopeful message, he concludes, “The goal is to create a conversation between diverse groups of artistes. The conversations need not lead to agreements, but as long as there is listening, there will be movement. Elation, discomfort and vulnerability can co-exist in the audience’s experience.”

On: December 1 to December 3, 12 noon onwards; December 7 to December 10, 5 pm onwards; December 13 to December 17, 5 pm onwards 
At: G5A, Laxmi Mills, off Dr E Moses Road, Mahalaxmi West. 
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Cost: Rs 75 onwards

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