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21:06

Spreading hope through the arts




Serendipity Arts Festival launches a new digital experience: SAF 2020 x You

April 24, New Delhi:  Serendipity Arts Festival is launching a new digital experience for all those who are braving the pandemic in quarantine and living in lockdown. SAF 2020 x You, a digital initiative, starting from the 25th of April, will be evenly spread across 5 - 6 days and will be hosted on the different social media platforms of the Festival, supported by a new, specially designed webpage.

The new webpage will carry the essential details about the daily offerings of this digital collaborative festival. The virtual festival will be bringing a range of multi-disciplinary experiences, from a cross section of the arts in the form of archived and aggregated content from the past and present. The offerings will see a diverse mix of content presented through webinars, performances, readings and workshops. People can expect to be a part of special sessions by the likes of Bickram Ghosh, tabla virtuoso and percussionist, Ranjit Barot, Drummer & Percussionist and curator of the music discipline from the Serendipity Arts Festival 2016, Sneha Khanwalkar, music director and curator to the Serendipity Arts Festival. Along with messages and special presentations by notable artists and curators who have been associated with the Serendipity Arts Foundation & Festival like Vidya Shivadas, Rahaab Allana, Ravi Agarwal, Veeranganakumari Solanki, Anuja Ghosalkar, Niketan Sharma, Astad Deboo and many more. Much like the annual festival the digital experience will also package elements for people of all ages. Ranga Shankara Theater, envisioned by Arundhati Nag, actress, theater personality and curator, will do special readings and storytelling sessions for children from fables and children’s literature. The programming will also include several workshops on theater, music and culinary arts for everyone to participate in and rejoice from the comfort of their homes. 

Speaking about SAF 2020 x You, Mr. Sunil Kant Munjal, Founder Patron, Serendipity Arts Foundation, said, Over the years,  Serendipity Arts Festival has become known as a people’s festival. We wholeheartedly support creative inclusion, and have worked hard these past few years to remove the hurdles and barriers that exist between the arts and people. At a time when people across all nations are hurting, and lives have been disrupted, the arts brings us together and helps us stay connected. SAF 2020 x YOU celebrates the human spirit, the ability to support each other, and to come out on top of any crisis with the human spirit and humanity intact. We hope this will brighten your day and give you reason for joy.”

The official hashtag of the digital festival would be #SAFeFestival, and its daily programming would be offered through the digital platforms of the Serendipity Arts Festival. Both the aggregated and original content is bracketed into four segments namely Exhibitions, Performances, Workshops and Readings/Resources. The content put up in these brackets would be shared by the partners and affiliates, past and present curators and artists from previous editions, along with a combination of popular content available from public sources, with due credit to the publisher.

 Speaking about the initiative Ms. Smriti Rajgarhia, Director, Foundation and Festival mentioned, “At Serendipity Arts Foundation, we have been inspired by the resilience and strength of the arts community, in offering kindness, hope and faith through the arts to the wider public, even as we collectively experience these strenuous times. We would like to thank the arts community for their efforts in keeping the arts alive and roaring, through this rough patch and bring some comfort to people.” 

For more information and the daily schedule please visit www.serendipityartsfestival-safxyou.com 

About Serendipity Arts Foundation
Serendipity Arts Foundation, a Munjal initiative for creativity, is a not-for-profit arts and cultural development Foundation that fosters cultural development and supports emerging artists across South Asia. The Foundation aims to promote new creative strategies, artistic interventions, and cultural partnerships which are responsive, addressing the social, cultural and environmental milieu of South Asia. The Foundation’s programmes are designed and initiated through innovative collaborations with partners across a multitude of fields, impacting education, promoting social growth via community development programmes, and exploring interdisciplinarity across the arts.

About Serendipity Arts Festival
The Foundation's primary initiative and largest project, Serendipity Arts Festival is a multi-disciplinary arts event held annually every December in Goa. Curated by a panel of eminent artists and institutional figures, the Festival is a long-term cultural project that hopes to instigate positive change across the arts in India on a large scale. Spanning the visual, performing and culinary arts, the Festival’s programming includes music, dance, visual arts, craft, photography, film and theatre. The Festival addresses pressing social issues such as arts education and pedagogy, cultural patronage, interdisciplinary discourse, and accessibility to the arts. Serendipity Arts Festival’s intensive programme of exhibitions and performances is energized by spaces for social and educational engagement.

Instagram:
@serendipityartsfestival 

Twitter: SerendipityArtsFest
Facebook: @serendipityartsfestival       
                                         
**Universally, this pandemic has taught us to come together and rally around the greatest strength we possess - the human spirit. Through all this, we at SAF are re- emphasizing what is most important - our audience, our team members and our beloved community. 

As we sit at home, checking the news countless times to see how the vaccine for COVID-19 is progressing, our perception of time changes. Distances have changed, the value of a hug has altered, the importance of friends, family, and community is stronger than before. The things we took for granted have been made abundantly clear. Everything we knew “before Covid” will be redefined by philosophers and poets, historians, environmentalists, and economists in years to come. Our team has been working tirelessly and thinking about the ways in which we could
both engage and support the human spirit. Our team has been putting together newsletters which include recommendations on film, music, books, online courses etc. https://saf-newsletter.squarespace.com/

We are, however, particularly fortunate to be at a point in time where technology allows us to explore and experience the arts like never before. From the comfort of your home, you can virtually travel to see / hear /experience / participate in a range of exhibitions, concerts, performances and workshops, all just the click of a link
away! We would like to thank the arts community for their efforts in keeping the arts alive and kicking! In this vein, we invite you to SAF 2020 x You. From April 25th onwards, join us to experience a multi-disciplinary cross section of the arts, both regional and international, in an online festival of sorts. In the spirit of collaboration, join us on this journey travelling, learning, and spreading joy through the arts. The show will go on!

#StayHome #StaySafe

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18:30

Art Therapy To Combat Stress And Relax yourself



Art ‘Meditation’ Therapy


By Dr Anindita Roy (icreativesciences@gmail.com)

Stress is one of the world’s largest health problems, leading to exhaustion, burnout, anxiety, a weak immune system, or even organ damage. During this stressful times of COVID-19, instances of stress have increased manifold and psychologists are busier than ever before.

Cortisol, also known as ‘the stress hormone’ is a biological indicator to measure changes in stress response in patients and also their caregivers.

Studying art making’ activities, with cortisol as a “Biomarker” , has been effectively used to measure stress levels in the body. Cortisol can be  measured through saliva samples; the higher a person’s cortisol level, the more stressed a person is likely to be. (Reference: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/07421656.2016.1166832 )

Studies have also shown that meditation can help control cortisol levels . Focusing on ‘one experience’ e.g ‘making art’, happening in the ‘present moment’ or ‘mindfulness’ can help you relax and improve creativity & cardiovascular health.

So we can say that ‘making art’ can be used as a meditative technique to relieve stress and lower cortisol levels and keep us anchored.

Research has also shown that increased cortisol levels give rise to complications such as Blood pressure, type2 diabetes, osteoporosis, weight gain, impaired brain functions and also lowered immunity so that the body caught infections readily.

Now, every individual is creative and can be expressive in the visual arts. Doing art of any kind  allows you to put into perspective things that are bothering you.

Academic stress in young college students and high school students needs to be dealt with and I think that creative arts can help. Younger persons are developmentally still raw and are still figuring out ways to deal with stress and challenges. Including creative art making techniques have helped many young people to effectively deal with stress.

The skill level of ‘making art’ does not matter. Here we are not aiming at making high grade artists . The idea here is to engage in ‘visual art making’ using easy techniques.

Some easy creative activities that help relieve stress are :

·         Abstract art with pencils, colour pencils or paint
·         Doodling with markers
·         Making structured or unstructured collages
·         Making Posters, cards, postcards
·         Clay modelling
·         Write with colours
·         Keeping a scrap book.



Playing a soft and  soothing music while ‘making visual art’ adds to the benefits manifold. Online support groups , in these critical times of COVID-19 can help boost and motivate you to engage in therapeutic art making activities. Making ‘Mindful Art’ can help you to achieve what psychologists refer to as flow which leads to improved performance and lowered stress levels. Start your journey to live a stress free life by creating a ‘dream journal’, ‘gratitude journal’ or just a daily ‘art journal’. We are here to help and support you in case of need. Do subscribe for online sessions.


covid-19 art


covid-19 art

covid-19 art



 Artwork by : SARMESTHA DUTTA

#covid-19 #novelcoronavirus #fightcorona #stayhomestaysafe #coronafighters















13:47

Integration Of Art In Studies

The first day I entered my Design class, my professor wrote me off as a hopeless case as I was a science student! That a science student cannot be a good artist and a designer was somehow etched in her mind.. However, as the class progressed, she had to agree that this science student was definitely an artist too!! And in a few days time she had to completely change her mind about science students not being able to create art! Now even experts agree that Design is ‘Science’ integrated with ‘Arts’.

My father, himself a science professor, was an artist at heart! His elder brother, my Jethu, was a commercial artist and a great one at that. He used to send us postcards with his pen and ink drawings on the front side with a small note on the reverse. I used to collect and copy his artwork as a little girl.

Our father was very strict about our science diagrams in school and in college both. He taught us the ‘art of observation’ at a very young age. He was a stickler for minute details and we got scolded for not being able to draw a perfect diagram at times. I also learnt to draw small sketches for every subject and topic.

When we were young, our books were not quite illustrated! I still have nightmares involving the thick History book with small fonts and no pictures at all! Children nowadays are so lucky to have all text books illustrated with sketches and artwork! But I was lucky to have a scientist father who was an artist at heart to teach me the art of observation and eye for detail. When the world was oblivious to mind-mapping, he taught us to map and chart out topics for better remembrance. So armed with this ‘power’ of observation, I entered my design college after my Postgraduation in Life Sciences.

Power of Observation is a skill that all children need to learn. Art integrated learning makes any subject interesting and enjoyable. It also enhances the power of observation in a child.

Now there are two basic kinds of arts, the visual arts and the performing arts. Visual art is that art which we can see- like sketches, paintings, photography and sculpture. Performing arts are music, dance, drama and other arts involving kinaesthetic activities. Integrating creative arts to mundane subjects make them more interesting and the students are able to retain the information better. Also, it is now known that our brain retains colourful and interesting information. Visual stimuli activates the brain’s ability to retain and process information in a better manner. So, here we get the concept of whole brain thinking! And it has now been proven that individuals practicing whole brain thinking are more successful in life.

The Government’s initiative to incorporate ‘Art Integrated Learning’ in schools is a commendable one. However, an issue commonly brought is that “not all teachers are artists,” meaning that there aren’t enough teachers capable of doing art to teach in every classroom. But here we would like to state that whether or not a teacher can do these things is irrelevant. The aim here is not to create master artists, but rather teach basic arts skills, processes, and aesthetic quality, and encourage creative teaching techniques.

The skills of art integrated teaching are simple and easy to learn and teach. We believe that these methods will be infinitely useful to creating interesting lesson plans and once put in practice will be enjoyed by both the teacher and the student. Once an arts-integrated environment is established, techniques, examples, and information can be shared and used.

As a Design Teacher and Mentor I have been consciously and sub-consciously using Art Integrated learning for my students from when I started to teach. I remember a batch of students whom I was coaching for Design Entrance exams. The whole bunch of students were scared of mathematics!! So I started them with copies a book which had lots of illustrations on the sides. I asked them to first colour the cartoons illustrated on the sides and then start reading the chapter. I am pleased to inform you that all of them picked speed in solving complex mathematical problems thereafter. They had learnt to integrate creativity into the subject of mathematics which they found mundane otherwise!

I also see many teachers of subjects like Marketing and Finance, encourage story and graphic techniques to the learning process. My son, studying Economics, once made a storyboard for one of his college topics using a drawing software and created a very creative presentation alongwith his team and I was very impressed by the way they were learning! They really made use of lots of interesting graphics to understand Economics and Finance!

So dear teachers, parents, guardians and our dear students, the era of Arts Integrated Learning is here to stay! Do try out Visual and performing arts techniques to teach and learn any subject from now onwards. Engage the students creatively for all subjects. A reminder again, the aim here is not to create master artists, but rather teach and learn basic arts skills, processes, and aesthetic quality for better retention of information and cognitive learning. It is learning with Fun.

Thank you for reading my take on the subject of ‘Art Integrated Learning’. I will be back soon with more on the subject.

Dr Anindita Roy, icreativesciences@gmail.com






Art By Sarmestha Dutta









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