Amar Kanwar, Filmmaker & Artist (India)
Respondent: Bish Sanyal, Ford International Professor of Urban Development & Planning, MIT
Indian artist and well-known filmmaker Amar Kanwar creates documentary-based multi-channel installations that deal with the politics of power, violence, sexuality, and justice. In The Torn First Pages, Kanwar unfolds the struggle for democracy in Myanmar. The eight-chanel video piece The Lightning Testimonies reflects upon a history of conflict in the Indian subcontinent through the experiences of sexual violence against women during and after the 1947 partition. Kanwar’s work has been shown in museums across the globe, and he received numerous awards for his works and humanitarian engagement. Kanwar participated in documenta 11, 12, and currently works on a commission for documenta 13.
Part of the Zones of Emergency: Artistic Interventions – Creative Responses to Conflict & Crisis Fall 2011 lecture series.
About the lecture series:
The Zones of Emergency: Artistic Interventions – Creative Responses to Conflict & Crisis Fall 2011 lecture series investigates initiatives and modes of intervention in contested spaces, zones of conflict, or areas affected by environmental disasters. The intention is to explore whether artistic interventions can transform, disrupt or subvert current environmental, urban, political, and social conditions in critical ways. A crucial question is how can such interventions propose ideas, while at the same time respecting the local history and culture.
The Fall 2011 lecture series is directed by Ute Meta Bauer and is part of the courses 4.365/4.366 Zones of Emergency: Artistic Intervention – Creative Responses to Conflict and Crisis (instructors Ute Meta Bauer/Jegan Vincent de Paul), 4.330/331 Intro to Networked Cultures & Participatory Media (instructor Gediminas Urbonas), and 4.360/4.361 Performance Workshop (instructor Joan Jonas).
The Fall 2011 ACT lecture series is free and open to the public, and is funded in part by the Council for the Arts at MIT.