For working with the audio-archives at the Archives and Research Centre for Ethnomusicology of the American Institute of Indian Studies (ARCE), Gurgaon. The ARCE is an extraordinary audiovisual archive that houses more than 25,000 hours of recordings, and includes all contexts of music production, such as recorded Indian music, dance, and performance of all kinds, from classical music traditions to regional traditions from all over India, popular music from film music, to Jazz in India. Shubhasree’s research engages with ‘work music’ practices in India, which is scattered across genres like agricultural songs, boatman’s songs, grinding songs, and more, to construct a framework into which these genres can be categorised, and explored.
For working with the audio-archives at the Archives and Research Centre for Ethnomusicology of the American Institute of Indian Studies (ARCE), Gurgaon. The ARCE is an extraordinary audiovisual archive that houses more than 25,000 hours of recordings, and includes all contexts of music production, such as recorded Indian music, dance, and performance of all kinds, from classical music traditions to regional traditions from all over India, popular music from film music, to Jazz in India. Priya Sen a filmmaker and researcher, will investigate the narratives, and conversations around oceanic routes, especially, the music of the Siddhis in Gujarat, and the music of the indentured populations from East India and UP, who migrated to Mauritius, Fiji and Trinidad.
For a grant supporting the creation of multiple artistic interpretations of Nabarun Bhattacharya’s novel Lubdhak. A graphic novel which will serve as a script for a feature length stop motion animation film later, will be created in the process. An electronic version of the graphic novel and a prototype of a short film for the animation will also be made. Grant funds will cover travel and food costs, material, props and lighting costs, professional fees, studio rental, documentation and an accountant’s fee.
For research to develop a modern, metaphoric interpretation of classical Tamil poetry and artistic depiction of the desert landscape of Palai in Sangam literature. In a cinematic form, the exploration will foreground the context of Tamil workers who have migrated to the Middle East.
For the creation of a performance themed around narratives of the hair. Titled ‘A Brief History of Your Hair’, the performance draws upon personal, historical, political and gender narratives of the hair and uses humour, playfulness and fantasy to unpack questions of identity, androgyny, gendered beauty and the way these ideas relate to each other across cultures. The performance is expected to premiere in March 2016. Grant funds will pay for professional fees, performance costs and production costs.
For research into visual arts and other cultural forms associated with the notion of representing the landscape of the Rahr (red soil) region of the district of Birbhum, West Bengal. The project will critically engage with the methodology of documentation as collective recollection. Through a dialogic method of archiving these practices, the researcher will engage in workshops with various scholars and practitioners of the region. The outcome of this project will be a visual book of images and processes of the workshops at the six locations.
For research into the progressive transformation of the raagini in Haryana through the expressions of women and Dalits. Exploring the effects on the social structure of Haryana through the 19th century reform movements and the freedom struggle, the project will focus on the experiences of participation and acceptance of women and Dalit writers and practitioners in the art form. The outcome of this project will be a monograph.
For a film, that will depict through a musical journey, the narrative of a community called the Savita Samaj whose story has remained untold in spite of being musicians of the Nadaswaram over centuries. Using the instrument as a visual metaphor, the film will explore the socio-economic issues that are influencing the sweeping changes in the lives of the community members and the agony of their loss of a great open-air musical school.
For research to excavate the discursive formation of pedagogy in arts schools in Hyderabad forged by the individual journeys of artists trained at different art schools across India, who wove a network that linked the region with other cities. The attempt is to understand arts practice of this region and its history, without participating in its national narrative and challenging the same. The outcome of this project will be a monograph.