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This remote Himachal village is hosting a week-long unique festival of art

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ShopArt ArtShop 3

KANGRA- A remote village of Himachal Pradesh, Gunehar, located in Bir, Kangra Valley is hosting ShopArt ArtShop (SA AS) – a unique conceptual arts project that brings out emerging artists, alongside established artists, to this remote village for a month-long project ending in a week-long festival of arts, culture, exhibitions, movies, fashion shows and drama.

Artist Ketna Patel

The fun part is that these acknowledged contemporary artists spend 30 days living among the rural people and, meanwhile, transform the entire village into a large canvas where these artists undertake various art projects depending on their respective fields. It could include anything from graffiti art, short films, cultural or local food exhibit to movie show. The entire village becomes a complex during the last week where each artist has his month long work of art on display. The villagers have taken to fondly calling SA AS 2 their own ‘mela’.

kangra

The village had hosted the event for first time in 2013 which had brought together 13 contemporary artists for the month-long arts event to Gunehar, creating quite a ‘buzz’ among art insiders.

ShopArt ArtShop

This year also witnessed  internationally renowned artists like Ketna Patel, Puneet Kaushik and Vibha Galhotra among others. Now, all the village along with villagers is gearing up for week long festival from June 7 -14.

Gunehar Village Kangra

ShopArt ArtShop is first to present art beyond the confines of the contemporary city-based art scene. It offers an opportunity for artists to come together in a fully-funded month-long residency organised by the 4tables project, where they are free to experiment in the unique environment of the village, explore new methods, and for emerging artists to receive the support and mentoring of seasoned practitioners.

These artists do not operate in isolation from the village and the villagers, but rather are encouraged to engage with ‘hosts’ as much as possible. New bonds and relationships are formed across many divides, giving everyone who touches the project and is touched by it new thoughts and emotions about art and about the village as a venue for it. The resulting art works reflect the ability of artists to transcend boundaries between rural-urban, traditional-modern, national-global.

SHOPART ARTSHOP kangra

For this year’s edition, among others,SA AS 2 is features, internationally renown artists Ketna Patel, Puneet Kaushik and Vibha Galhotra! and Puneet Kaushik as co-organisers, alongside Frank Schlichtmann, the initiator of the event. All have worked tirelessly to bring the latest edition to fruition.

Artist Vibha Galhotra

A group of other excellent artists such as Mudita Bhandari, KM Lo, Gargi Chandola, Sheena Deviah, Amrit Vatsa and others compliment the great cast of artists with their contemporary disciplines and concepts.
ketna patel

SA AS 2 also features an innovative and interactive netart platform -Virtual Village, which can be visited virtually via official website of ShoP Art Shop

The project is now well underway and ready for the festival  starting from 7-14 June, and is inviting artists and villagers to visit and witnessed amazing combination of rural socio-economic setup and various works of arts.

himachal vilage fest

ketna patel

Art & Culture

Incentives to Himachali films under State’s own Film Policy: Govt

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Film policy of Himachal Pradesh

Shimla: The Himachal Pradesh Government today announced that it would form its own film-policy and will encourage local films and artists in various ways.

A meeting regarding formulating the film policy of the State was held here today under the chairmanship of Additional Chief Secretary Dr. Shrikant Baldi.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Baldi said the state had the advantage of adventurous, heritage, spiritual, seasonal and unexplored destinations and the efforts would be made to attract the filmmakers for film production in the state.

He said that the cultural, mythological, historical heritage and glorious traditions of the state would also be publicized in a big way to attract investment in the film sector in the state.

The government would endeavour to provide an opportunity to the talents in the field of acting and other related fields besides generating employment opportunities to the youth of the state.

Dr. Baldi said that production of regional films based on Himachali dialects would be especially encouraged, for which the government would provide various incentives to the producers.

Various other important issues like establishing required infrastructure and to make available desired facilities to the filmmakers and providing them attractive financial incentives were also discussed in the meeting.

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Art & Culture

Shimla’s emerging filmmaker grabs 3 more awards for short-film “Papa”

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Papa Short Film by Siddharth wins awards

Shimla: Shimla-based emerging short-film maker Sidharth Chauhan (27) has grabbed more awards for his work “Papa.”  His short-film Papa has received three awards at the Vintage International Film Festival, 2018.

As per the results announced on March 20, 2018, the movie won Sidharth the best short-film award in the National category. The film also won the best director award for Siddhartha and best cinematography award for Yashwant Kumar Sharma.

The film is written, produced, and directed by Sidharath.

Papa is the same film that was first screened at the International Documentary and Short Film Festival in Kerala in 2016 where it claimed its first award (best film).

Later, Papa made its first international premiere at the London Indian Film Festival in 2017 where the short film won the Satyajit Ray award. 

It was a mature storytelling which balanced a realistic sense of frustration and claustrophobia, with a finely nuanced thread of subtle and deadpan humour,

said the jury.

The film is a story of a paralyzed mother, Sushma and her young son, Rajiv, who are living a tough life post an accident, which left their lives scarred forever.

You can read more about the film, its crew, location etc. in one of our previous posts.

Other than Papa, Sidharth’s short-film Pashi has also fetched appreciation and awards for Sidharth.

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Art & Culture

Himachal’s traditional ‘Mandi Shivratri’ fair begins today

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Mandi shivratri 2018 pictures

Mandi: The traditional Shivratri Mela of Mandi district, which is a week-long international fair, began today as the Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, Jai Ram Thakur, formally announced the opening at the historical Paddal ground at Mandi. 

This year’s celebrations are special for the people of Mandi as it is the native place of the Chief Minister. Also, Bhartiya Janata Party has captured all 10 seats in the district including the support of the one independent candidate.  

I am happy to see all nine MLAs including an Independent who have gathered here for celebrating the festival with traditional fervour,

he said.

Earlier, after paying obeisance at the famous Madho Rai temple, the Chief Minister participated in the traditional ‘Jaleb’ (Shobha Yatra) of Shivratri fair, which began from DC office to end at the Paddal ground.

Mandi shivratri 2018

Local deities along with the Chief deity Madho Rai led the procession.

The locals draped in their colourful attire thronged the procession carrying along the palanquins of the local deities and marched towards the Paddal Mela ground. A little less than two hundred Devtas participated in the ‘Jaleb’, the traditional Shobha Yatra, from almost all corners of the district.

The life of the people of the state revolves around the local Gods and Goddesses, and the local deities are an inseparable part of the people. The Shivratri festival gives a glimpse of ‘Dev and Manav Milan’ (the meeting of humans with deities), he said.

The Chief Minister announced a hike of 20 percent in ‘nazarana’ of the local deities, 20 percent hike in ration quota, and two times increase in honorarium of ‘Bajantris’ – the musicians who accompany the deities.

As compared to Rs. 3,64,000 in 2017, with two times rise in honorarium of Bajantris, the expenditure the expenditure will be Rs. 7,31,000  in 2018.   

The Chief Minister has assured that the government will register the left-out deities in a phase-wise manner.

 ‘Sarv Devta Committee’ will formulate the guidelines, examine each case, will pass a resolution in the house unanimously, and the committee will forward the case to the district administration for necessary action. 

 The Chief Minister also released a souvenir of the festival on the occasion. 

He said the government would soon come up with parking places to decongest traffic.  

The Chief Minister said Mandi will be connected with air services under UDAN scheme, (a regional connectivity scheme of Government of India). A helipad will be constructed in Mandi, he said. 

The state government will take up the issue with the Union government along with the demand for direct flights from Chandigarh to Kullu, Kangra, Shimla and for tribal areas,  the Chief Minister assured. 

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