Schedule for Chobi Mela VII

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Posted by Priyanka in Better Photography

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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.”

The Schedule

  • Events

    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
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