Feb 04 2013

CRACK International Art Camp

by The Editors with Shawon Akand

Though home to a limited art scene backed by modest government support, Bangladesh has established a number of nonprofit, artist-led initiatives over the past decade. Most recently, in the southwestern town of Kushtia, Crack International Art Camp held its sixth annual edition (12/25­–12/30), continuing its effort to encourage young artists and activists from across South Asia.

The environmental art residency, initiated by Shawon Akand and Delwar Hossain, took its inspiration from the sadhusanga (social gatherings) of the Bauls, mystic minstrels living in rural Bangladesh. This year, achinpur (the unconscious or unknown)—a term lifted from Baul songs and philosophies—guided the curatorial vision of Akand and Satadru Savon Bhanduri. The 30 participants from India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka made poetic interventions in the rural village landscape—crocheting dream catchers across tree branches, setting origami boats afloat on the placid river and staging dark performances for the village audience. 

“Dream Catcher,” installation by Aarthiee Kushawaha (Pune, India).
“Dream Catcher,” installation by Aarthiee Kushawaha (Pune, India).
Shawon Akand is an artist, researcher and curator in Dhaka. His publications include: Tendency of Modern Art in Bangladesh (2005), A Study on Metalwork in Dhamrai  (2007) and Dhakai Jamdani (2011).