Posted by Priyanka in Better Photography
The 7th edition of Chobi Mela, an international festival of photography is scheduled to begin from 25 January–7 February 2013. The festival is held once in every two years, in Dhaka, Bangladesh. It features print exhibitions, digital presentations, artists’ talks, workshops and so on.
Chobi Mela VII
How Chobi Mela Came About
In 1989, Shahidul Alam, a photographer who has since then changed the face of Bangladeshi photography, founded Drik. This is a photo agency devoted to showcasing the works of photographers ignored by the mainstream world. Nearly two decades later, Chobi Mela was born. The biennial has upheld the values of its founder and has tried to lend a platform to those who can truly sense a story. The past editions of the Mela featured themes like Differences, Exclusion, Resistance, Boundaries, Freedom and Dreams. Thus, the Mela has helped conceptual artists and photojournalists explore social inequality in its myriad forms.
A Lineup of Various Talks, Seminars and Exhibitions
The Mela will bring together print and digital presentations that challenge the traditional perceptions of art. It will reach out to the public through galleries at unconventional open-air locations and mobile touring exhibitions. There will also be workshops, discussions, seminars and lectures. Some of the talks lined up for Chobi Mela include those by the 70-year-old stalwart, Graciela Iturbide; the renowned Norweigan portraitist, Morten Krogvold; art historian Christopher Pinney and the founder of Contact Press Images, Robert Pledge. Other names include Munem Wasif, a noted Bangladeshi photographer and Photo Circle, a collective from Nepal.
Want to Travel to Chobi Mela? We Tell You How
In order to visit the festival which is going to be held between 25 January–7 February 2013, you need to get a visa from the Bangladesh embassy in New Delhi or Kolkata. For Indian nationals, a tourist visa to Bangladesh is free. For this, you need to fill up the visa form and send it to the embassy. You can even get your visa done through an agent, but you will have to pay their charges. Then, one option is to book a direct inexpensive flight to Dhaka from New Delhi with BimanAir. You can even fly to Dhaka from Kolkata. Another cost-effective option is to travel to Kolkata by train and then to take a train or a bus across the border to Dhaka.
Shahidul Alam, Founder of Drik, on Fragility:
What connects photography and the theme, Fragility? One also wonders how a topic as ephemeral as this, was explained and found expression. We found that as a part of a larger essay on Fragility, Shahidul Alam wrote, “The sweeping gestures of photography have thrived on extremes. Great things, epic moments, the wretched, the vile, the dispossessed, the celebrated and the trodden, have all found themselves facing the lens. Photography has exalted suffering, celebrated the vain. Quiet moments, reflective spirits, the hesitant step, the furtive glance have rarely made headlines. Perceived as being unworthy of the shutter.”
Draft Schedule for the Chobi Mela VII International Fesitval of Photography as of 19 December 2012.
Please note that the schedule is still subject to change and needs to be confirmed.
Chobi Mela VII Programme
25 January 2013, Friday 04.00 pm Opening ceremony Venue to be announced shortly 26 January 2013, Saturday 03.00 pm Pablo Bartholomew, India Artist’s Talk at the Drik Gallery 06.00 pm Slideshow: Latin American Photography Curator: Patricia Mendoza, Mexico 07.00 pm Graciela Iturbide, Mexico Artist’s Talk 27 January 2013, Sunday 11.00 am Christopher Pinney, UK Discussion: Archiving project in India 06.00 pm Slideshow: Russian Photography Curator: Liza Faktor, Russia 07.00 pm TBD Artist’s Talk 28 January 2013, Monday 11.00 am Photo Circle, Nepal Discussion and book launching: Nepal Memory Project 06.00 pm Slideshow: Bangladeshi Photography Curator: Munem Wasif, Bangladesh 07.00 pm Jodi Bieber, USA Artist’s Talk 29 January 2013, Tuesday 11.00 am Shahidul Alam Panel Discussion/Case Study: Transformation on the photographic Scene 06.00 pm Slideshow: African Photography Curator: Nii Obodai, Ghana and Bisi Silva, Nigeri 07.00 pm Morten Krogvold, Norway Artist’s Talk 30 January 2013, Wednesday 11.00 am Cultures on the Edge, Chris Rainier and Chris Riley, USA Book launching/Technology and future of photography 06.00 pm Slideshow: South-East Asian Photography Curator: Francoise Callier, France 07.00 pm Nasir Ali Mamun, Bangladesh Artist’s Talk 31 January 2013, Thursday 11.00 am Robert Pledge, USA Panel Discussion/Chinese Photography 06.00 pm Slideshow: Middle-Eastern Photography Curator: Hester Keijser, Netherlands 07.00 pm TBD Artist’s Talk 01February 2013, Friday 11.00 am Book launching: Bangladeshi photography 06.00 pm TBD Slideshow 07.00 pm TBD Artist’s Talk