Curating for Culture

In the ongoing research project, Revisiting India’s Architectural History: Tracing the Women Practitioners of Twentieth Century India, the intent has been to converse with a wide-range of women practitioners in architecture and built environment industry, map their journeys through oral history recordings and arrive at an alternate narrative of Indian architectural history post-independence.

Karnataka’s diverse cultural landscapes are a home to a wide-range of historic sites, ecological assets, cultural experiences and community collections. However, only a few of them have been recognised and very many are difficult to access even today by people from all walks of life. The state of heritage management in the many urban or regional centers thus remains contested under the agendas of development and growth. This call for participation is rooted in the idea of action for change, wherein the participants are urged to think about ways in which local residents can get involved, discussions can be initiated with bureaucrats, various professionals can be engaged and sustainable ways of preservation can be sought out for celebrating the rich heritage of Karnataka.

Click on the image above to participate in the essay competition!

The exhibition, Kitchen to Kacheri: political responsibilities of personal histories has emerged as a collective response to questions about the changing relationships between the State, cultural institutions, people and their historical narratives. By archiving and urging readers to engage with a range of different archival boxes, we wish to unpack the logic of care, custodianship and construction, and the ways to care for somebody else’s narrative. In this pursuit, the emotion of care extends from domestic to public, and each archive reinterprets the concepts of preservation and personal emotions against political responsibility. Created over a series of constantly evolving dialogues, we invite you all to be a part of it for further deliberation. To know more, click here.

Parallel efforts concerned with material, aesthetic, and historical meaning-making include the preservation practices of the Dhaka Urban Study Group and Bombaywall Historical Works; the transnational digital Asia Art Archive: the archiving, curatorial and library science initiatives of Jackfruit Research and Design and Curating for Culture; and the ephemeral festivals aiming to capture the creative gestalt, from Lahore to Dhaka to Panaji. These endeavors, to name only a few, have shaped and opened the architectural archive in order to grow South Asian narratives of the modern.

- Dr. Anooradha Iyer Siddiqi, Introduction: Architecture as a Form of Knowledge, Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East, Volume 40, Number 3, December 2020, pp. 495-506 (Article). Published by Duke University Press.

We are a collective. We are also many diverse individuals. We are passionate about cultural issues and creativity is our hack. Our work ranges from community engagement in regional settlements, exercises in historical and cultural preservation, taking up institutional responsibilities, engaging in constructive activism to designing responses and facilitating public appreciation in urban settings for creative exchanges.

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संस्कृति के लिए संग्रहाध्यक्ष का काम | સંસ્કૃતિ માટે વસ્તુપાલનું કામ | संस्कृती साठी पदार्थ संग्रहालयाचा प्रमुख चे काम | ಸಂಸ್ಕೃತಿಗಾಗಿ ಕ್ಯುರೇಟರ್ ಕೆಲಸ | ସଂସ୍କୃତି ପାଇଁ ଚିକିତ୍ସା