Tamasha

Tamasha
Tamasha
Tamasha

Tamasha

The inaugural winner of the Publishing Performance residency and book award uses sculpture, collage and reappropriation to capture the synaesthesia of a rural Indian working-class spectacle.

Indian artist Abhishek Khedekar's experimental docu-fiction follows a 100-person nomadic troupe of Dalit 'families' performing Tamasha: a travelling form of performance combining dance, music, and visual art dating back to the 1800s. As post-independence India moved away from rural dance and song forms, Tamasha became stigmatised, polarised and relegated in Indian society. Criss-crossing the state of Maharashtra, Khedekar's images dive into the complexity of this sociocultural fabric with a dizzying array of artistic techniques by utilising archival material, collage, documentary photography, performance, sound and video. 

Khedekar's bricolage of experimental visual narratives elevates the make-do, unpretentious attitude of Tamasha performance into a unique aesthetic of song, community and expression: situating Tamasha's traditions in modern India.

Khedekar is the recipient of Publishing Performance 2022: an artist’s residency and publishing award focused on the intersections of photography and performance. Khedekar developed his work as artist-in-residence at Mahler & LeWitt Studios in Spoleto, Italy, for a book to be edited, designed and published by Loose Joints.

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