As Biennale winds up, filmmaker Adoor lauds the festival as common mans

ON  03 Apr, 2019

Addressing an evening gathering indowntown Ernakulam, the 77-year-old auteur said the host state can no moreimagine its cultural future without the biennale. This festival has only beenbettering with every edition, I must say as someone who has viewed it frominception (in 2012), he said about the South Asia’s biggest event of its kind. The 108-day festival is scheduledto conclude on Friday evening with a flag-lowering ceremony at Aspinwall House,the main venue of the event, in Fort Kochi.

The biennale, curated by eminentartist Anita Dube, turned out to be the first anywhere in the world to feature womentotalling more than half of its participating artists who came out with 94projects in ten venues of the heritage city. Based on the curatorial theme of ‘Possibilities for a Non-Alienated Life’, it sought toexplore newer access to art practices while hosting an array of seminars,workshops, lectures, films and stage performances. At the valedictory ceremony atDarbar Hall Ground on Thursday evening, Adoor said the biennale has become aplace where students from various field have been visiting. This has becomeone of the top biennale’s in the world. We have seen representations from otherbiennale visiting and appreciating the works on display and showing theirinterest in the various artistic projects showcased here, he added. Bose Krishnamachari, president ofthe Kochi Biennale Foundation that is organising the festival said the latestedition clocked a total footfall of 6.2 lakh people from across the country andabroad. We believe that the next edition will be bigger. In fact, from 2020,the biennale will be extended up to 120 days. Krishnamachari, also an acclaimedartist, extended his thanks to all his team and the curator. Without all ofyou, we would not have reached to this successful end. Special thanks to the2018 curator Dube. She dealt with some important subjects.

Dube said she hoped to havedelivered what she promised of bringing out a biennale that is more inclusive. This biennale meant to show the struggle the women in society face in theirday-to-day life, she said. Through my curatorial efforts, I ensured thatyoung artists get a platform to showcases their work. Pleasure combined withpedagogy was the overriding theme. Trustee N S Madhavan announced the Student’s Biennalewinners at the ceremony.

Kerala Tourism Director P Bala Kiran said thebiennale, coming within four months of the floods that devastated the statelast monsoon, helped the state regain its influx of travellers to God’s OwnKerala. I take this opportunity to thank the biennale that has compelledtourists to visit Kerala after the floods, he added. Sunil V, Secretary of the Foundation,proposed thanks. The ceremony was followed by an interactive concert by conversationband Oorali, which is a participant at the biennale that began on December 12last year.

The festival was inaugurated at the ParadeGround in Fort Kochi by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

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