Creating Video History/ Documentation of Indian Culture | Milaap
Creating Video History/ Documentation of Indian Culture
of Rs.9,80,000
4 supporters
  • NadirSun

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  • NP

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    Nadir P P

    from Kozhikode, Kerala

     I am NadirSun . I have finished my Bachelors' degree in fine arts in Painting (College of Fine Arts Trivandrum, Kerala) and am studying Masters Degree in Sculpture (Hyderabad Central University- SN School) and I am directing this project.  The members who are the part of this project are Ramya.E.M (BFA in Sculpture, Chitrakala Parishath, Bangalore, MFA in Ceramics and Glass, Viswa Bharati University, Santiniketan, West Bengal) and Himavamsi (BFA in Graphic Art, Chitrakala Parishath, Bangalore.
     From past 12years I have been working with Painting, Sculpture, Photography, Audiography and Videography as my art practice. When travelling through various landscapes in the past years, with the materials available at the time, I have been recording and documenting various events and subjects as a part of my personal work. In each place, there is the land and culture, its people, the festivities, their crafts, its agricultural practices, the landscapes and its weather, its living creatures, trees and the sounds, which I have been recording meditatively as a witness. In doing so, moving through different natural and cultural landscapes and historical sites, many times I have felt the need or necessity to make very detailed documentation of these subjects. The nature is in a constant movement of drastic changing states because of the current social conditions led by new technology and the lifestyle and culture that has happened as a result.  I am not judging this scenario as good or bad. The landscapes that I had visited 4-6yrs before has changed drastically or does not exist now, yet the ones I have recorded in my phone or camera hold evidence to what had existed before. In such a condition, many times I have felt to document these with equipments of good quality, so that even when these physical landscapes are erased or changed forever, an evidence of their existence can be recorded, and such a recording makes possible for us to revisit that time and practices of the culture as long as this media exists and can be saved and kept.     These photos that are attached a lesser than a small part of the entire collection of photos and videos that I have taken. I have about 2.5- 3 lakh photos and videos likewise that are taken in less quality equipments and these are randomly selected from the whole.
     The subjects that we intend to document in detail as videograpy, photography and illustration:
  • Creating Video History/ Documentary-

1. Historical sites and artifacts of India, beginning with Barhut Stupa
2. Villages and Ponds- the life and living spaces around them
3. Pottery and traditional crafts
4. Witnessing daily life

1. Historical sites and artifacts of India, beginning with Bharhut Stupa
Historical sites (Video and Photos)

(This video is a short clipping from the preliminary study that we have been doing. The original project will have text, illustrations and audio narrative supporting the documentation which will talk in detail about each art subject, describing the story, its importance and the historical background behind it. The music in this video is also temporary. For the original documentation, music will be newly made.)

     The intention of this project is to make a detailed video history/ documentary of historical sites, art objects and subjects of India. When we search for Historical sites of India in virtual spaces, for people in our country or around the world, only a periphorical  visual information of the subject is found. Even as art students when we were searching for these subjects as part of our study material, sources of elaborate visual documentary were not found. Yet, when we did visit these sites directly, we are presented with a rich visual culture and treasury of images unlike any in the entire world. The documentation or films available until now to the public, donot do justice to the original art subjects and whatever images or documentary is available is not aesthetically satisfactory or of good quality.       Even when there are books available that talk in detail of the subject and photographs that support them, the images are not detailed and individual attention as artwork themselves have not been given to these works. Even when some books do have these images, they are not available or affordable to everyone. What we intend to do with this project is to make available a vivid visual history of each and every aspect of Indian Art to the entire world, giving emphasis to each and every part of each art subject in great detail as the artists of that time themselves have, in the making of these works.
We would like to begin this project with Barhut Stupa railings, continuing with Sanchi and further on with Cave art, Temple art and so on. This project is a continuous process.      This documentation is not time bound- it can be accessed by anyone at any point of time in the future as long as these virtual spaces exist. Due to this, this project is not aimed just at the audience of the present time.

With the concern of publishing the art documentation, we intend to allow these to remain as open sources on virtual media, so that it is accessible to art students, the public and anyone around the world who is interested. Further on, we also have a plan to create a storytelling like, illustrative narratives of the same historical subjects for children at school level, once this documentation is completed.
2. Villages, Ponds-the life and living spaces in and around them
Village, life and living spaces (Photos)

In the past, in a short period of 10-15years, a major area of landscape that had existed there earlier has changed so drastically, leaving no trace of tradition of living spaces and life of villages and ponds. These are completely buried underneath the newly populated buildings and the culture, that it has become difficult to recollect or even imagine such a place. The people who have witnessed both what was before and what has newly arrived  are finding it difficult to be identified with the new and are uncertain as to where they belong.  These ponds, fields, trees and sounds  to which several migratory birds had once regularly arrived, are now replaced by huge buildings and noise. Unlike the cities and the buildings that do not change much in time, these natural living spaces are constantly and radically changing forever.
 The age-old natural landscapes to which these birds had arrived travelling miles across the globe, following a route/a map, millions of years old, is buried beneath layers of the new environment and the connecting thread between them is lost forever. In this situation, before these landscapes and subjects, are permanently wiped out in the course of time we have the need to record every aspect of these places in great detail with the eyes of a painter and this is what we intend to do.

3. Pottery and traditional crafts
Pottery and traditional crafts (photos and Videos)

 The practice of pottery which has the rich culture of thousands of thousand years, the contentment of the potters and craftsmen and their way of life is on the verge of being erased. When the current life is looked at, it feels like the practice of pottery and its craft which is very friendly to our body and health, is most challenged to be completely removed from articles of everyday life. India, which had the largest population of pottery and craft culture and villages have now been shrunk to a countable few. Throughout India, in each state and its different parts there are several styles and processes of pottery making and different techniques of firing. With this project, we intend to document each and every one of these varied practices of traditional and studio pottery and craft and the methods followed in their making in detail.

4. Witnessing daily life
Witnessing Daily life (Photos)

     Besides these, in living or travelling, there are occurrences like birds, animals, trees, light and landscapes that present itself accidentally and spontaneously and these I am continuously recording using the materials available at hand. The difficulty with this is that they cannot be presented as a professional work, due to technical inefficiency/ inferiority of the equipments of the work.

I am also practicing music at the Maihar Gharana, in Kolkatta and have completed the third grade in the Recorder instrument from Trinity London. Maihar Gharana is among India's most prominent music schools and  also among the Gharanas with which Hindustani music began. The students of the Grand Masters of the Gharana are still active and I am practicing under them. At the same time, I also wish to record these Gharanas, their music and practices however possible. Personally I am constantly meeting and coming to interact with several musicians and artists and have a rich creative circle. And I also want to document them individually.     For making these projects possible, it is very necessary for us to have good quality equipments. As artists, for many years we are suffering the lack of proper equipments and have been desiring for it. This lack has prevented us from doing many valuable events and subjects. We feel that this lack is not just personal.

We need quality equipments like Mirrorless Camera, Lenses, Tripod, Gimbal, Sound recorder and others to be able to smoothly carryon this project. The funds will primarily be used to buy these equipments. The rest will be used in the travelling and stay in these places, acquiring  study materials of research, in interviewing scholars on the subject, as payment for editing videos and sounds and building a website.

     To begin with the projects, primarily the equipments are very much necessary. For the fulfilling of these projects we are seeking for financial aid.  Any aid would be of great help and would be heartily thankful as this help will be the very foundation of bringing these valuable subjects to light.
     To begin with the projects, primarily the equipments are very much necessary. For the fulfilling of these projects we are seeking for financial aid.  Any aid would be of great help and would be heartily thankful as this help will be the very foundation of bringing these valuable subjects to light.

Ramya E M
Battula Himavamsi

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