BasCon Second edition awaited

Heritage and arts come together


News - India & You

October 30, 2017

/ By / Kolkata

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Tribal women dressed up to perform dances and chants during the Mopin festival at Basar earlier this year

Tribal women dressed up to perform dances and chants during the Mopin festival at Basar earlier this year

The second edition Basar Confluence, which is eastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh’s first-ever Artist Residency is set to be held this weekend.

At the quaint, mystical Basar, which is located in the Lower Siang district of north-eastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, an art residency programme is set to culminate into a weekend of festivities. The second edition Basar Confluence (BasCon 2.0), to be held on November 4-5, will be showcasing the work of the artists along with cultural and folk performances of the local inhabitants, the Galo tribe. The first edition of the festival, held earlier this year, saw performances from several musicians as well as a showcase of the Mopin Harvest festival of the local Galo tribe.

The BasCon 2.0 will see acts such as the ‘King of the Naga Folk Blues’, Guru Rewben Mashangva from Manipur, as well as Omak Komut Collective from Arunachal Pradesh. Some of the folk dances to look forward to will be from the Singpho and Monpa tribe. Folk music, dance and feasting are set to engage locals and visitors. The artists in BasCon 2.0 include the Malayalam film director, Sajin Babu from Thiruvananthapuram in south India, Dharitri Boro, a teacher at Visva Bharati Univerity in West Bengal and a mixed-media artist; trained theatre professional Biresh Krishnan Chavakkad from Kerala in southern India; Anil Bairwal, a poet and photographer from Indian capital city New Delhi and Guwahati based composer, Arunavh Dam.

The first BasCon, held earlier this year, was celebrated after the first of its kind month-long art residency programme in this unexplored region of India. The initiative has been kicked off by local NGO, Gumin Rego Kilaju or GRK, that has been working in the region to promote an equal society through the medium of art and culture. Jumdak Basar, among the key members of the organisation and a local youth leader, stated the idea behind the organisation, “Basar is a place of rich heritage and culture. We are hoping to keep this intact in the face of a changing social sphere of the world.”

Interaction through collaboration

The confluence seeks to bring in artists from around the country to experience the rich tradition and culture of Basar, as they working with the local community to result in a story-telling through art. “The idea of this residency is to bring focus on Basar, particularly to a niche discerning section of the population. The artists are expected to work on a collaborative work and the only brief they are being given is to draw from their surroundings and to give back to Basar,” stated Jummar Basar, Organising Chairman, GRK Basar Confluence.

The organic and eco-friendly styled celebration hopes to become a showcase of culture, marking the end of the residency programme, which is entirely produced by the local community. Explaining the philosophy behind the residency, “We want to take forward the initiatives of living harmoniously with nature and the process of creating opportunities,” Jummar added.

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