Nayanjyoti Barman

Maharaja Sayajirao University, Vadodara

For this project, I created a teaching model which is non-academic. There are no conditions, no discipline that might prevent children from using their creativity in any manner. Children from rural regions are truly close to nature and they are magnificent in a creative way. I have learnt many things from them and vice versa. I noticed that during this lockdown period, kids from farming communities in the neighbourhood were just moving around and wasting their time. I started spending time with them ever since. I came to know how they think, and how strongly grounded they are in a traditional, agrarian way of life. They made several objects that are a familiar part of their surroundings and I later displayed them in many different ways. The project is still ongoing. Engagement with the arts can address social inequality and disadvantage, and create vitality and shared identity.

“Machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines, you are not cattle, you are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts. You don’t hate: only the unloved hate, the unloved and the unnatural. Soldiers, do not fight for slavery, fight for liberty! You the people have the power, the power to create machines, the power to create happiness! You the people have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure! Then, in the name of democracy, let us use that power. Let us all unite! Let us fight for a new world, a decent world.”
― Charles Chaplin

I am currently living in Baroda, Gujarat. On the outskirts of the city is a site of industrialization called the GIDC, covering 50 square km and still expanding. I am alarmed at how industries are growing day by day, occupying land and damaging the soil. These concerns are the main content of this project, which is site-specific. I used my studio as a place to express this, making a mechanical structure that gradually covered the whole space. I mapped and projected a video on the work so it changes from one form to another and keeps the machine moving. Algorithms can be an incredible way of visualizing invisible patterns of things and transforming them into poetic motion.

Occupy space. 2020. Cardboard. 20’ x 10’ x 10’
Occupy space. 2020. Cardboard. 20’ x 10’ x 10’