STUDENTS’ BIENNALE 2018 | THE EXPANDED EDUCATION PROGRAMME
MAKING MATERIALITY MATTER: ART HISTORY AS THE HISTORY OF MAKING
BY SARADA NATARAJAN
BHUBANESWAR | 29 OCTOBER – 5 NOVEMBER 2018
At the B.K. College of Arts and Crafts
Other participating college: Government College of Art and Crafts, Kalikhote
What would the History of Art (in any historical/geographical context) look like if it was reframed as the History of Making? Aptly titled Making Materiality Matter: art history as the history of making, the workshop focused on ‘slowing down’ and re-engaging with three key areas of an artists’ practice – materiality, making, and matter. By engaging the students in a practical basket weaving crafts exercise, a deep reading of a historical text related to the building of Konark’s famous Sun Temple, and site-visits to Udayagiri caves and Konark Sun temple, the workshop gave way to days-long discussions around materiality vs. matter; art and craft; affordances, resistances and agency of material, and in turn the role of the artist; and most importantly the understanding of processes and making.
This workshop was developed by Dr. Sarada Natarajan, an art historian and educator, who has taught for more than a decade to students of art history, practicing artists and students of theatre at the University of Hyderabad. She helped formulate the art history syllabus for the Fine Art Department at Shiv Nadar University and taught courses there for three years. Her research interests include ancient and medieval Indian sculpture and iconography, art historiography, art history pedagogy and adopting new materialist approaches to understand art practices from the past. Her work is also inspired by her own training in Carnatic music and interest in ecology.