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Rohan de Soysa

Rohan de Soysa received his photographic training in the early 1960’s at the London School of Printing and Graphic Arts. He worked as a freelance photographer after qualifying. He was a part-time teacher at St.Martin’s School of Art in London, where he also photographed the paintings, sculptures and fashion work of the students.

He taught photography on weekends at Kelaniya University after he returned to Sri Lanka in 1977. He has contributed photos to many publications including “The Masks and Mask Systems of Sri Lanka” by Dr M H Goonetilleka, “Briefly” by Bevis Bawa, “David Paynter” by Eve Darling and Albert Dharmasiri and most recently “The Sapumal Foundation Collection – a Select Catalogue” by Neville Weereratne and himself.

He was invited by the late Harry Pieris to be a Trustee of the Sapumal Foundation in the late 1970’s and was elected Chairman in 2010.

He gave up professional photography in the mid-1980’s and is now 70 years old. He is active in Societies and Trusts involved in matters of Art and Environmental Conservation.

 

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Shahidul Alam

A photographer, writer, curator and activist, Shahidul Alam obtained a PhD in chemistry at London University before switching to photography. He returned to his hometown Dhaka in 1984, where he photographed the democratic struggle to remove General Ershad. Alam set up the award winning Drik agency, the Bangladesh Photographic Institute and Pathshala, the South Asian Media Academy, considered one of the finest schools of photography in the world. Director of the Chobi Mela festival and chairman of Majority World agency, Alam is a guest curator of the National Art Gallery in Malaysia and the Brussels Biennale, Alam’s numerous photographic awards include the Mother Jones and the Andrea Frank Awards. His recent book “My Journey as a witness” has been published by the Italian fine art publisher Skira and listed in the “Best Photo Book of the year 2011” compilation by American Photo Magazine. He is currently working on a series of books and a film on the 1971 war of liberation of Bangladesh and setting up a rural journalism network in Bangladesh.

 

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Cecil Balmond, UK/ Sri Lanka

Balmond Studio is a synthesis of art, architecture and structure.  Exploring  a new sense of space through algorithms and an animation of geometry, the studio has produced award-winning projects.  Recent public artwork include the Star of Caledonia, won in an international competition, a large sculpture for the England and Scotland border, and a light installation sculpture in Alaska.  Cecil Balmond in collaboration with Anish Kapoor produced the ArcelorMittal Orbit sculpture for the London Olympics this year.  He has also worked on the very successful Serpentine Pavilions in London.  Cecil and John Balmond are setting up a studio workshop in Sri Lanka for work in the region.

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Roman Berka, Austria

born 1973 in Vienna
Art historian, curator, author; studied History of Art at the University of Vienna and Exhibition and Cultural Communication Management at the University of Applied Art, Vienna; long term co-worker and since 2009 director of the art association museum in progress (www.mip.at), Vienna; project coordinator of the social organisation one world foundation – free education unit (www.owf.at), Vienna – Sri Lanka; recent publication: Roman Berka, Christoph Schlingensiefs Animatograph. Zum Raum wird hier die Zeit, Edition Transfer, ed. by Christian Reder, Springer Wien – New York, 2011.

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Suresh Jayaram, India

Curator, Colombo Art Biennele 2012, Founder Director of the Visual Art Collective, 1Shanthiroad in Bangalore. It believes in fostering interactions between artists, curators, scholars, writers and young students in the local and global context. In the context of India and Srilanka, the region has seen many political shifts and a lot social unrest; the issue of linguistic nationalism is a matter of concern. The fragile boarders and troubled waters are a constant reminder of our common geography. The conflict between the Sinhalese and Tamils has scarred the landscape leaving us with grief and trauma of loved ones. It is through regional interaction and dialogue that we hope to redeem the trauma. Art connects, heals and is a catharsis for change.

www.1shanthiroad.com

 

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Neil Butler, UK

An artist, cultural strategist and creator of festivals and events. In the 80¹s he founded the Brighton Zap Club, curated programmes at the ICA and directed shows for the South Bank in London. He worked as an artist and performer in several performance and music groups and toured with them around the Europe. In 1988 he was invited to Glasgow to create festivals and events as part of a programme to prepare the city for being European City of Culture in 1990. In 1994 he founded UZ Events with directors from Unique Events and Zap Productions and became a specialist in closing down cities to create venues. In 1999 he created signature events for Glasgow when it was UK City of Architecture and Design. Butler was Event director of the STUC Centennial celebrations and Glasgow¹s Millennium Hogmanay. Neil has always explored the line between art and entertainment and the tension between the instrumental use of art and ‘art for art’s’ sake.

 

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Martha Rosler, USA

Martha Rosler is an influential video, installation and performance artist. She was  born on July 29, 1943 in Brooklyn, New York. Martha Rosler did her BA at Brooklyn College, graduating in 1965. She then obtained her MFA in 1974 from the University of California at San Diego. She has taught at the Städelschule, a contemporary fine arts academy in Frankfurt, and at Rutgers University in New Brunswick in New Jersey at Mason Gross School of the Arts. Martha Rosler is also an eminent writer on art and culture and is solicited to lecture both nationally in the US and internationally since at least the mid-1970s.

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Jagath Weerasinghe

‘The Patient’ & ‘The Cause of Illness’ are concertina painted books. Circles like a microscopic view of various microorganisms both presenting a situation where one is engaging in self-discovery of oneself to be ill or to be ‘not ill’ – a process.

‘The Black Egg Boxes’ Forever caught in a flux, continuous change, fluidity of meaning by confronting one with the question – which is black, the eggs or the boxes? Exterior versus interior. The interior is an assumption which may or may not be true.

Jagath studied Painting at the Institute of Aesthetic Studies, University of Kelaniya (1977-1981) and at the American University in Washington DC (1988-1991). He currently teaches History and Theory of Archaeology, Art History and Heritage Management at the Postgraduate Institute of Archaeology, Colombo. Some of his most significant exhibitions have been ‘Anxiety’ and ‘Yanthra Gala Round Pilgrimage’ which introduced possibilities of artistic expressions reflective of broad political and social implications within a deep personal context. Jagath is also the Founding Member and Chairman of Theertha International Artists Collective in Sri Lanka.

 

 

 

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