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Christoph Schlingensief

Christoph Schlingensief was a talented, energetic maverick, often working on several projects at the same time: films, theater, opera, blogs, interviews, prose, art actions, videos. By the end of his life he was considered one of the most influential figures in the German theater and something of a national treasure. the screenings will take you through some of his landmark productions:

Starting with Für Elise (1982) 2 mins of Schlingensief’s first 16mm work is followed by the documentary Christoph Schlingensief and His Films for those who are completely unfamiliar with his work. ”My Wife in Five“, a short film of 3 music video clips are strange poetic shots about a woman. ‘Egomania‘ featuring Tilda Swinton and Udo Kier is a definite end-of-the-world scenario. Next “The German Chainsaw Massacre” is an account of the tragedy which befell a group of East Germans. Closing with a film that questions “What is normal? And who is retarded here anyway?” – Freakstars 3000 is the German parody of the American Idol

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Martha Rosler

An artist who works primarily with images and texts. Most of her work concerns social issues, which are manifested at sites as various as the kitchen, the television set, the streets and the transport systems. Martha’s method is to let different worlds meet to unsettle people’s usual way of differentiating between us and them, here at home and over there.To create links between what appear to be entirely different worlds, entirely different spheres. That is the principle of the collage – two things torn from their contexts are combined and form a third – new meanings arise and the parts can never return to what they were. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

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Sujan Chitrakar

Sujan Chitrakar is a Kathmandu based visual artist and art educator who received his
fine ART education from Nepal and India. With numerous national and international art
workshops and regular exhibitions to his credit, he practices Art extensively in public
and private spaces – both individually and collectively.

Currently he is academic programme coordinator/assistant professor at Centre for Art
and Design, School of Arts, at Kathmandu University.

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Tayeba Lipi

‘I Wed Myself’ is a two-channel video projection enacting a dual gender existence in one being. The role of a bride and groom are played simultaneously by one. While gender suggests one is either a boy or a girl, the artist prefers to perceive a newborn as a child. The work is a realization that, despite the artist’s gender as a woman, there also lie within her, innate masculine characteristics.

Tayeba Lipi, born in Gaibandha, Bangladesh studied drawing and painting at the Institute of Fine Art, University of Dhaka until 1993. She is one of the Founder- Trustees of Britto Arts Trust, where she played a major role as coordinator since its inception in 2002 until 2007. Her curations include several international large-scale projects, as well as recently being the commissioner for Parables: Bangladesh Pavilion at the 54th International Art Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia, 2011

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Pradeep Thalawatta

“Disappearing and Reappearing Landscape” Recurrent travel between Colombo and Jaffna in the recent past left the artist imagining what the landscape might have been before. An image of the selected landscape is redrawn with a soldering iron, leaving burn marks on the paper. ‘Is anything missing in this landscape?’ ‘Could it be replaced?’ It’s a rebuilding process with changes.

Pradeep Thalawatta had his first art education at the Vibhavi Academy of Fine Arts and completed his undergraduate studies at the Beacon House National University, Lahore, Pakistan where he received a BFA degree in 2007. In addition, he underwent training in jewelry, fashion design, textile design, interior and graphic design at the National Design Centre, Sri Lanka. His interest is in the contemporariness of material, texture, color, the exotic allure of the urban waste. He has showcased his work locally and in India, Maldives, Sweden since 2003. He lives and works in Sri Lanka.

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Janananda Laksiri

Mirror Images – the work is an effort to grasp the changes of one engaged in the process of transition – the infinite complexities of every move. A play of flickering lights and reflections; hanging bats and entangled kites; and sound activated only when one enters the space. The situation in the enclosed space is affected and changed by the visitor.

Janananda Laksiri lives and works in Sri Lanka as a full time professional artist. He has participated in a number of art exhibitions in Sri Lanka as well as abroad. His art practice includes painting, sculpture, installation, and object art. Notably Laksiri is an IT competant artist who has done numerous digital art, i.e. digital photos and videos. He is the chief graphic designer, animator and video editor at Theertha International Artist Collective. He is a participant cum organizer of many community art projects such as teacher training and other workshops organized by Theertha. The Vibhavi Academy of Fine Arts, the National Design Centre, Sri Lanka and his engagement with Theertha, has profoundly shaped his art practice.

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Erik van Lieshout

The work is a handmade cut out text derived from the slogans one finds everywhere in shops seducing to get people in and to buy their goods. The text refers to consumerism and the implicit promise of the slogans being used to make people feel happy.

Erik van Lieshout is one of Holland’s most prominent artists and his provocative works treat sex, violence, politics, and commercial culture with equal humor, candor, and irreverence. He sets out on spirited journeys, turning whomever or whatever he encounters into subject matter for his social documentaries. His endless curiosity and his disarming personality encourage strangers to share their intimate feelings and politics openly with him. Trained as a painter, van Lieshout became well-known in the 1990s for his expressionistic canvases and large-scale drawings which merge graphic images of drugs, pornography, and street culture with a range of media figures including Burka-clad women, Batman, and Snoop Dogg. In 1997 van Lieshout began making the simply-crafted sculptures and video installations that now round out his multi-media practice. Van Lieshout places himself directly in the center of his videos using his experience as a crucible to interpret the complex psychology of a nation grappling with immigration, tolerance, colonialism, and sexuality.

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Dominic Sansoni

‘The Jaffna Home’ is a photographic record of the interior of homes in transition and homes that might continue to be lived in as they have been for many years in the peninsula of Jaffna, since the ending of the conflict. This is the beginning of a continued work on documenting the way people on the peninsula live and how they might change their style with time and opportunity.

Dominic Sansoni has worked as a professional photographer since 1980. He has published several books and his most recent publications have been two books on Mauritius, ‘COLOUR’ in 2010 and ‘INCOGNITO’ in 2011. Recent personal projects have been the documentation of the vernacular architecture of South India, and a study of ‘Sacred Space’ in Sri Lanka. He is always fascinated by how people live; their private space and sense of style within a home. This curiosity and enthusiasm has taken him down many paths and is humbled by how often he is allowed to intrude into people’s homes and share their personal space.

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Aaron Burton

 ‘Ape Ammage Gama‘ (My Mother’s Village) is a personal response to three ethnographic films my mother, Sharon Bell, and father, Geoff Burton, produced on the island in 1978. ’33’ places video footage from the 1978 films directly alongside my footage from 2011. The comparison and dialogue between the two generations reveals fascinating cultural, social, and material transgressions over the last three decades. Through the characters’ lives, the theme of ‘becoming’ becomes a complex paradigm concerning heredity, geography, time, and spirituality.

Aaron Burton is a documentary filmmaker, photographer and an emerging visual artist. Over the last few years Aaron has been specializing in combining digital photographs and video into personal documentary narratives. His work intends to traverse the boundaries of documentary, visual anthropology, and video art. In 2008 Aaron graduated with a first class honors degree in documentary photography from Queensland College of Art, Griffith University, Australia. But it was under the tutelage of his father, renowned Australian cinematographer and director Geoff Burton, that Aaron developed in the craft of filmmaking. He is currently undertaking a PhD at the College of Fine Art, University of New South Wales, Sydney.

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Leo Pasqualge

“Censorship” was inspired by the essay “Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction,” by the German Jewish writer/critic Walter Benjamin, who took his own life when on the verge of being captured by the Gestapo in Portugal. The process of becoming is a fact. So is censorship, which is a global phenomenon. Post-war Sri Lanka is indeed at a threshold. Censorship may be a political act – the deliberate use of power, competition and games to coerce. It may be used at the level of one person to another, in relations between group, and within and between countries. Censorship may be based on the censor’s fear, who in turn uses fear to encourage self-censorship. Fear and/or prudence lead one to self-censorship. The question is what are we becoming?

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