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Collaboration With Rockefeller Foundation 2016 -18

The Rockefeller Foundation invited KHOJ as a collaborator to identify and nominate exceptional artists from Asia for a month-long residency at the Rockefeller Foundation's Bellagio Center in Italy. This unique collaboration enabled artists in Asia to interact with the diverse community of intellectuals at the Bellagio Centre, opening up new possibilities and opportunities for creative practitioners from the greater Asia region

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About this edition

KHOJ collaboration with Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center

KHOJ is incredibly excited to announce a the second year of partnership with the Rockefeller Foundation and the Bellagio Centre. KHOJ has been invited by the Rockefeller Foundation to identify and nominate exceptional Asian artists for a one month residency at the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center in Italy. The aim of the residency and the role of KHOJ within this collaboration is to raise the visibility of artists from across Asia, and to enable exceptional artists from the region to advance their work through the prestigious Bellagio Arts and Literary Arts Residency program. KHOJ believes in empowering and supporting artists and art practices that are experimental, radical, marginalized and critical. In collaboration with the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Centre, KHOJ will recruit highly distinguished artists and creative practitioners within Asia to interact with the diverse community of intellectuals at the Bellagio Centre, enabling new possibilities and opportunities for artists from the greater Asia region. The residency model is a structure KHOJ strongly advocates, as this is the backbone of its organisation. The residency model stands in as an endless source of enquiry, experimentation, and research. KHOJ, in collaboration with the Rockefeller Foundation, looks forward to witnessing the outcome of this fertile experience offered by Bellagio, where diverse thinkers and practices are brought together to inform one another.

We are delighted to announce our new Regional Nominating Partners for 2017:

YARAT Contemporary Art Space (Baku, Azerbaijan): YARAT is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to nurturing an understanding of contemporary art in Azerbaijan and to creating a platform for Azerbaijani art, both nationally and internationally. Based in Baku, YARAT (meaning CREATE in Azerbaijani) was founded by Aida Mahmudova in 2011. YARAT realises its mission through an on-going program of exhibitions, education events, and festivals. YARAT facilitates exchange between local and international artistic networks including foundations, galleries, and museums. A series of reciprocal residencies further fosters opportunities for global cultural dialogue and partnership. Educational initiatives include lectures, seminars, master classes, and the Young Artist Project ARTIM (meaning PROGRESS in Azerbaijani).

International Prize for Arabic Fiction (London, England): The International Prize for Arabic Fiction (IPAF) is the most prestigious and important literary prize in the Arab world. Its aim is to reward excellence in contemporary Arabic creative writing and to encourage the readership of high quality Arabic literature internationally through the translation and publication of winning and shortlisted novels in other major languages.

In addition to the Prize itself, IPAF supports other literary initiatives. In 2009 IPAF launched its inaugural Nadwa (writers’ workshop) for emerging writers of fiction in Arabic. The Prize is run with the support, as its mentor, of the Booker Prize Foundation in London and funded by TCA Abu Dhabi (Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority) in the UAE.

Although the Prize is often referred to as the ‘Arabic Booker’, this is not instigated nor endorsed by IPAF or the Booker Prize Foundation which are two completely separate, independent organisations. IPAF is not in any way connected with the Man Booker Prize.

Salima Hashmi (Lahore, Pakistan): Salima Hashmi is an artist, curator, and contemporary art historian. Professor Hashmi was the founding Dean of the Mariam Dawood School of Visual Art and Design at Beaconhouse National University, Lahore. She taught at the National College of Arts [NCA] Lahore, for 31 years and was also Principal of the College for four years.

She has written extensively on the arts. Her book Unveiling the Visible- Lives and Works of Women Artists of Pakistan was published in 2002, and Memories, Myths, Mutations – Contemporary Art of India and Pakistan co- authored with Yashodhara Dalmia for Oxford University Press, India in 2006.  She has recently edited The Eye Still Seeks – Contemporary Art of Pakistan for Penguin Books, India in 2014.

KHOJ International Artists’ Association ( New Delhi, India)

KUNCI Cultural Studies Centre (Yogyakarta, Indonesia): KUNCI Cultural Studies Center inhabits a precarious position of belonging to neither this nor that within existing disciplinary boundaries while aiming at expanding them. The collective’s membership is open and voluntary, and is so far based on an affinity to creative experimentation and speculative inquiry focussing on intersections between theory and practice. Since its founding in 1999, KUNCI has been deeply preoccupied with critical knowledge production and sharing through means of media publication, cross-disciplinary encounter, action-research, artistic intervention, and vernacular education within and across community spaces.

TheatreWorks (Singapore, Singapore): Established in 1985, TheatreWorks (Singapore) is an independent and international performance company based in Singapore. It is an Institute of Public Character. It is currently led by Artistic Director, Ong Keng Sen and Managing Director, Tay Tong.

Since its establishment, TheatreWorks has staged over 200 productions and 2,500 performances in Singapore and overseas, and has reached an audienceship of over a million. TheatreWorks’ home is 72-13, a heritage building that was once a rice warehouse on Mohamed Sultan Road and next to the Singapore River.

TheatreWorks/72-13 is dedicated to the development of contemporary arts in Singapore and to the evolution of an Asian identity and aesthetics of the 21st Century through a culture of differences. It asks, what is Asian in this age of globalisation, internationalisation, modernisation and urbanisation? Its works exist on the tension between modernisation and tradition; local and global. Representing the continuum between tradition and contemporary, the works are unafraid to be exotic and yet conceptual. TheatreWorks’ projects present the hybrid identity of the contemporary Asian and embrace the multiple realities.

4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art (Sydney, Australia): 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art (4A) is an independent not-for-profit organisation based in Sydney, Australia. 4A fosters excellence and innovation in contemporary culture through the commissioning, presentation, documentation and research of contemporary art. Their program is presented throughout Australia and Asia, where it is ensured that contemporary art plays a central role in understanding and developing the dynamic relationship between Australia and the wider Asian region.

4A’s activities facilitate cultural dialogue between Australia and Asia in the belief that Asian cultural thinking significantly shapes the world today and will have an important impact on the future. In Australia, 4A showcase stories, presenting a multiplicity of perspectives and exploring contemporary concerns and ideas that influence how the nation engages with Asia. They have a particular focus on art that addresses Asian-Australian experiences and the contributions that diverse Asian migration has made ⎯ and continues to make ⎯ in shaping Australia. 4A’s focus in Asia is to promote the breadth of Australian artistic talent, seeking to build an image of Australia that is open, progressive, and fundamentally connected with our Asian neighbours.

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