BAGRI FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES WINNERS OF CHANG/CE — AN OPEN CALL TO ASIAN ARTISTS FOR THREE NEW ANIMATIONS
*** For immediate release ****
The Bagri Foundation is delighted to announce the three winners of its open call for animations Chang/ce, a series of three online commissions established in response to the changing nature of the world as we entered 2021.
From a strong pool of artists from all over Asia, including Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Singapore, Hong Kong, China, India, Pakistan, Syria, Indonesia, Thailand, The Philippines, Japan, Korea, Palestine, Malaysia and Iran, the guest selectors and the Foundation are pleased to invite the following artists to make new work:
- Rama Duwaji, a Syrian illustrator and designer currently based in New York City. Her new commission will tell the story of a future Syria.
- Meera Krishnamurthy, an animation filmmaker based in Bangalore, Karnataka, India. She will take a humorous and hopeful look at a woman’s life during COVID through Tarot cards.
- Nuka Nayu, a multidisciplinary artist based in London, originally from Korea. They will explore the 49-day Korean funeral tradition as way of creating their own book of permutations.
Inspired by the Chinese classic, the I-Ching or ‘Book of Changes’, Chang/ce invited artists, illustrators, designers, and animators from Asia or the diaspora to create online works to be presented across the Foundation’s digital platforms. The Foundation was looking for something unique, which inspired us to consider ‘change’ or ‘chance’ – perhaps as a prophecy, an uncertain future, an exciting new path, a chance for renewal or a challenge that must be undertaken – through creative storytelling.
Each of the £3,000 new commissions creatively responded to this theme and will be presented on our website throughout July 2021.
The guest selectors said of the Open Call:
Olivia Ahmad, House of Illustration
“The applicants to Chang/ce represented exciting emerging voices in international moving image practice. Rama Duwaji, Nuka Nayu and Meera Krishnamurthy’s work stood out in a very strong field and I look forward to seeing their unique takes on a theme that is pertinent to us all.”
Intan Paramaditha, writer
“It was a delight to see how Asian artists creatively and critically respond to the idea of ‘change’ through animation. They tell stories that are imaginative, thought-provoking, and political, reflecting rich and diverse sources of inspiration, from the everyday life to rituals and folk tales.”
Sahej Rahal, Artist
“It was really fantastic to engage with such a broad range of practices during the jury process. I was particularly excited to find artists using a collection of experimental methods of image making and storytelling techniques that drew from history, mythology, contemporary narratives to challenge traditional modes of representation and expand the contours of what constitutes the moving image.”
Reaksmey Yean, curator and writer
“The persons of the three finalists embody not only the conceptuality of multiculturality and diversity, but their practices also project and constitute what might taxonomize as mixed-media, heritage-cum-contemporary aesthetic expressions, experimentation, hybridity, and intertextuality. Their proposed ideas and stories are relevant to our time, the pandemic and the new normal, and speak of issues that have been overlooked, if not wholly ignored. The tension between the past and future, the old and the new, and the tradition and the modern resurfaces and emerges in the techniques, materials, and storyline proposed. I can’t wait to see these stories in their final form, the animation.”
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Notes to Editors:
Rama Duwaji is an illustrator and animator who uses visual art as a tool to examine themes of sisterhood and authentic expression within communities. Originally Syrian, she creates imagery of women of colour in healing spaces as a way to envision a future without the pressures to conform to western standards of living and beauty. Her symbolic illustrations critique current societal norms and highlight the roles that community practices play in one’s mental health and well-being. She has created illustrative work for the likes of Tate Modern, BBC 100 Women and Spotify Arabia.
Meera Krishnamurthy is an animation filmmaker based in Bangalore, Karnataka. She has an MA in Animation Film Design from Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology. Her graduation film, “A Flowering Tree” was screened in 50+ film festivals including Animafest Zagreb, LA International Children’s Film Festival and River to River Florence Indian Film Festival. It won a jury award at Palm Springs International Animation Festival & Expo, CA, USA in December 2019. Her main interest lies in telling women centered tales. Her work is inspired by Indian art and architecture- particularly South India, folktales, fairytales, theatre, old Tamil songs and photographs. She is a student of the Carnatic Saraswati Veena. When she’s not playing veena, she is brawling in taverns of Hearthstone.
Nuka Nayu (formally known as Nayu Kim) is a multidisciplinary artist based in London, originally from Korea. Nayu seeks to temporarily invoke a state of ‘becoming’ rather than ‘being’; a constantly shifting threshold within the absent and invisible. They use ‘Chaos’ as a method to direct their work and employ the use of ‘making strange’ as a focal point to bring about new modes of stimulation. Nayu is a recent graduate of MA Sculpture at Royal College of Art and previously graduated from Goldsmiths Studying BA Fine Art (Hons). They are currently on a 6-month-residency called SPUR at Chaos Magic Space, in addition to having a month residency at the QUEERCIRCLE this January. They have also recently screened their film ‘SLEEPAWAKE CHAOSKAMPF: OFFICIAL TRAILER’ for ‘AOS’ at Arebyte Gallery. Nayu took part in the ‘CARELESS LIMBS’ group show which was being featured in ARC Magazine: Dirty Issue. They also presented a sound performance at Montez Press Radio part of ARC Magazine’s two-issue-contribution, and they have previously performed for the magazine’s launch event. Nayu performed for Gut magazine’s annual launch event (2019) at LN-CC and they were part of The Oscar Wilde Temple Artists’ Group (Winter programme 2019) at Studio Voltaire. Other group exhibitions include ‘Everything you need to know about Sculpture’ in Orozco Garden at South London Gallery, and ‘Sculpture Zoo Keepers’, Hackney Gallery, Royal College of Art in 2019. Nayu had a month residency (RAID) and presented a solo show at Penarth Centre in 2016; some other performances include ‘MONO:4’ at Courtyard Theatre, DIG, HFBK Hamburg and Red Gallery, in previous years.
About the Bagri Foundation
The Bagri Foundation is a UK registered charity, inspired by unique and unexpected ideas that weave the traditional and the contemporary of Asian culture. The Foundation, with its roots in education, is driven by curiosity and a desire to learn, and aims for each project to challenge, engage and inspire. Through a diverse programme of film, visual arts, music, dance, literature and talks, the Bagri Foundation gives artists and experts from across Asia and the diaspora, wider visibility on the global stage. Recent projects include At Home in the World, a series of digital commissions; Tantra: enlightenment to revolution at the British Museum; Object, Story, Wonder: Museum Collections Revealed; and From Here to Eternity: Sunil Gupta, A Retrospective at The Photographer’s Gallery, London.