Affirming Life in Colours: Art as Struggle

Allowing the elements to paint his canvas: Artist Venkat from Chennai

Artistic expression is inextricably linked to the cultural resistance and political struggles of the people.  Human modes of agitation and liberation become creative and constructive through democratic politics of culture that uses creative ways of articulation and developing voice consciousness among the excluded.  Focusing on dalit lives through art becomes significant in India in the context growing inequality and exclusion.

Affirming her own space: Artist Christy from Chennai

More than 30 artists basically belonging to the challenged sections of society from all over south India participated in the 4th annual Art Workshop program held in Vagaman in the first week of December 2010.  The participants included art professors from major Universities to art students and independent artists and activists.

My own: Untitled paintings in Acrylic

Art students and professors from JNT University, Hyderabad and Myosre University were in the forefront this time.  Radical dalit artists and dalit feminist artists from Chennai were also there from the very beginning.  Folk and tribal practitioners of art also found their space in the workshop.

British painter Amanda in conversation with artists and critics in the historic Asa Sadan designed by Laury Baker

The camp was organized by Vikas Adhyayan Kendra of Mumbai. The artists explored various socio political and cultural questions of their time and space on canvas.  They focused mainly on the visualization of the struggles of the marginalized for denied equal rights and dignity.  Art critics from Kerala and abroad also visited and interacted with the practitioners of political art.  I too did two paintings this time.

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