On 24 March, FORMAT Festival, Derby, marked the first UK iteration of Here, There and Everywhere. In Thread Whispers Artist Shivani Gupta uses film and photography to capture stories of ancient folklore told within rural communities in India. From witches, elusive love, to mountains with souls, Gupta worked collaboratively with communities, asking them to enact and embody these folk tales to explore the rich cultural significance of myths.
Aradhana Seth’s project, The Merchant of Images recreates a traditional photo studio, recalling a time before ‘selfies’ where the experience of being photographed was special and memorable. The Merchant of Images invites visitors to be the sitter, in the foreground of a traditional Indian photograph: complete with lavish and fantastical backdrops, theatrical poses and vibrant colour.
Also at FORMAT, the archives of Indian Memory Project comprising personal photographs, letters, and other ephemera, were reanimated by visual artist Barret Hodgson, with a live Indian electronic music performance by Bandish Projekt, combining the past and the future.
Curator Tanvi Mishra from Delhi Photo Festival will undergo a residency to gain experience of the curatorial aspects of organising a major international photography biennale in the UK and to gain experience of working within a diverse contemporary arts organsation.