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Transforming Narratives' Critical Dialogue events to 'hold up a mirror to society'

Kalaboration Arts will present a series of critical dialogue events as part of the Transforming Narratives project.

The free online events, featuring speakers from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Birmingham will take place on 29 August, 26 September and 24 October.

The aim of these conversations is to identify, trace and analyse some of the dominant narratives that have structured and shaped the contemporary artistic and creative endeavours of Pakistani and Bangladeshi artists and creative practitioners both in Birmingham and in the sub-continent.

Kalaboration Arts is a dynamic Birmingham based arts development agency and its three artistic directors Mukhtar Dar, Ian Sergeant and Bob Ramdhanie have been at the forefront of producing, programming, touring and commissioning the arts and cultures of Asian, African and Caribbean peoples for the benefit of all.

Holding up a mirror to society

“By holding up a mirror to society, artists have been at the forefront of envisioning a better, more diverse, and just world for all,” said Mukhtar Dar, Artistic Director Kalaboration Arts.

“In these challenging times with the climate catastrophe, unprecedented global inequality, mounting authoritarianism, and the Covid-19 pandemic ravaging the lives and lands of the world most marginalized communities, these three critical conversations bring together multiple voices from the world of art and culture to explore some of the compelling issues facing the people of Pakistan, Bangladesh and the Diaspora here in Birmingham.” 

Sophina Jagot, Project Director Transforming Narratives said: “We are delighted to be working alongside Kalaboration Arts to present these free events. Transforming Narratives is very much a platform for dialogue, debate and new understanding and these conversations will open up new connections and a shared understanding of contemporary art and cultural narratives in Birmingham, Pakistan and Bangladesh going forward.”

Critical Dialogue Events

Sunday 29 August – Art in the times of the COVID-19 Pandemic
Time: 1pm (UK); 5pm (Pakistan); 6pm (Bangladesh
)

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How has the covid-19 pandemic impacted on art/ artists in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Birmingham and in what ways have artists responded to create innovative and referential work that captures this moment in time and engages audiences?

Sunday 26 September – Margins to the Mainstream – Equality & Solidarity in the arts
Time: 1pm (UK); 5pm (Pakistan); 6pm (Bangladesh)

What are the challenges facing artists from marginalised communities in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Birmingham and how do we create a meaningful dialogue between the people who form the majority and the minority and address issues of intersectionality and how do we create empathy and solidarity within and across diverse communities through the arts?

Sunday 24 October – State Subsidy, Artistic Freedom & Censorship
Time: 1pm (UK); 5pm (Pakistan); 6pm (Bangladesh)

Is artistic freedom for everyone and can artists in Pakistan, Bangladesh or indeed Birmingham critique and challenge dominant narratives by biting the hand that feeds and speak truth to power or is the fear of being silenced and censored leading us to self-censorship and mediocrity in the arts?


Each event should last for approximately 90 minutes and are aimed at Transforming Narratives partners as well as the wider public with a particular focus on Pakistani and Bangladeshi creative practitioners and critical thinkers in the UK and Bangladesh and Pakistan.

Booking details for the September and October events will be announced shortly.

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