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Articulating Resistance

Art and Activism

Edited by Deeptha Achar , Shivaji K. Panikkar

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The disciplinary understandings of contemporary Indian art are being challenged in our time by experiences, narratives and strategies designated as activism. Articulating Resistance: Art and Activism explores this space between art and activism without letting the discourse being reduced either to a simple formulation about art in activism or activism in art. The focus, instead, is on interrogating the politics of aesthetics as well as the connections between the visual and other disciplines. Deriving its insights from methodological moves made in the fields of art history/criticism, culture studies and visual culture, the book foregrounds the links between the practice of art and the urgencies of the public world trying to bridge, in the process, the space that reaches across the academy and all that is known as activism in our time. The different sections in the book explore the complex relationship between art-producing practices and frameworks of viewing that seek alignment with the various struggles around caste, community, gender and sexuality.

Deeptha Achar

Deeptha Achar teaches at the Department of English, M.S. University of Baroda, Vadodara. Her publications include The Age of Adventure: Childhood, Reading and British Boys’ Fiction (2010). She has co-edited Towards New Art History: Studies in Indian Art (2003) and Discourse, Democracy and Difference: Perspectives on Community, Politics and Culture (2010). Her areas of research interest include visual culture and childhood studies.

Shivaji K. Panikkar

Shivaji K. Panikkar teaches at the School of Culture and Creative Expressions, Ambedkar University Delhi, Delhi. His publications include Saptamatrka Worship and Sculpture: An Iconological Interpretation of Conflicts and Resolution in the 'Storied' Brahmanical Icons (1997). He has edited Twentieth-Century Indian Sculpture: Last Two Decades (2000) and co-edited Towards A New Art History: Studies in Indian Art (2003), among other books. He has written texts for several exhibition catalogues and has organized important conferences around the theme of New Art History. His research interests are in the areas of pre-modern and modern Indian art.

“The book describes how censorship, vandalism and resistance have played out in the university, with students, artists and faculty ranged against the right wing and an increasingly partisan university administration. Contributing authors seek to describe the dynamic relationship between art and activism and also tackle shifts in contemporary arts practice, particularly in the last three decades. Articulating Resistance also considers questions of class, caste, gender, community and sexual orientation as the basis for an analysis of arts practices making for a politically sharp reading of conventional art history.”

Devina Dutt, The Caravan