Serendipity Arts Festival to bring an Immersive Experience to Goa

The fifth edition of the Serendipity Arts Festival is taking place in Panaji, Goa, and features an amazing selection of interdisciplinary arts and programmes. The Old GMC Complex will serve as the festival’s focal point, along with other venues like the Art Park, the Excise Building, the Multi-level Parking, the Santa Monica Jetty, the Post Office Museum, and the Arena, to name a few. The Serendipity Arts Festival (SAF) is scheduled to take place from December 15 through December 23.

The Festival will preserve its essential principles of inclusivity and provide immersive artistic experiences. With a big emphasis on kids’ programmes and people with special needs, sustainability, inclusion, and accessibility continue to be very important.

SAF continues to be held in the historic city of Panaji in Goa. “The festival is a manifestation of our values as a foundation and we are happy to be returning with its much-anticipated 5th edition in Panaji, Goa. The path the festival has taken thus far not only demonstrates our dedication to the cause but also highlights the advancements and effects we have accomplished. We will continue to expand its creative and collaborative bounds in conjunction with our partners and collaborators,” says Mr. Sunil Kant Munjal, founder and patron of the Serendipity Arts Foundation.

The programming for this edition pans across Exhibitions, Performances, Workshops, Public Arts, Children’s programming, Talks & Book launches, and much more.

At the Old GMC Complex, Pramod Kumar KG will be in charge of curating the exhibition segment, which will highlight the world of specialised books on Indian art history through a wholly immersive experience. Projects like Forgotten Carpets of the Jaipur Court: Craft and the Promise of the Archive, an exhibition highlighting the sad state of craft documentation and archives in India, will also be part of this segment. Adding to the art and craft segment is Anjana Somany and her project, Srijan: Space Making Craft Practices of India, will bring to life the world of craft and its rich traditions of materiality through space-making. The foremost practitioners of visual arts, Sudarshan Shetty and Veerangana Solanki, will also serve as curators for the exhibition portion. Veerangana Solanki will explore the online virtual space with five artists titled Future Landing: The Arcade, where 10 artists will shift from the digital to the physical realm.

‘The Island That Never Gets Flooded: A Public Arts Project by Serendipity Arts Grant will feature Goa-based artists like Amche Mollem, Diptej Vernekar, Julien Segard, Nityan Unnikrishnan, Salil Chaturvedi, Tinu Verghis. Local artists will be given the opportunity to create new interventions and immersions using sites, localities, and technology through interdisciplinary practices in Panjim. The Festival will also feature the works of the Serendipity Arts Foundation Residents and Grantees from 2021-22.

The Goa Familia re-emerges, in a bigger format, curated by Lina Vincent and Akshay Mahajan, showcasing an extensive archive of Goan cultural history and traditions, highlighting the many layers of human interaction with the place, its dwellers; its documentation which tells many a story.

This year’s Performance segment, curated by Bickram Ghosh, Ehsaan Noorani, Quasar Thakore Padamsee, Geeta Chandran will see musical, theatrical, and dance practices and expressions from across the South Asian region, celebrating an amalgamation of traditional, contemporary, and experimental forms.

The music component, which was put together by Bickram Ghosh and Ehsaan Noorani, will contain a sizable segment covering a wide variety of genres, including rock, folk, indie pop, classical, fusion, and more that are played live. Over the course of the Festival’s nine days, Bickram Ghosh will curate the best of global music, with masters like A. Shivamani, Taufique Qureshi, Rickey Kej, and many others. Local music will be paid homage to through collaborations and re-adaptation of folk and traditional musical practice. A group of kids who produce music using instruments built out of scrap and waste materials will be led by Sanjay Mondal as part of Ghosh’s curation, which also includes building platforms for up-and-coming artists and creative innovators. The World of Pancham: An RD Burman Tribute, a section of Ghosh’s curation, will pay tribute to R.D Burman’s brilliance.

Ehsaan Noorani will specifically focus on the northeastern states with artists who indulge in genres spanning pop, rock, folk, and blues and showcase the diversity of musical expression of that region.

Staying true to the interdisciplinary focus, Quasar Thakore Padamsee and Geeta Chandran will bring forth their projects intersecting dance, drama, music, and storytelling. Geeta Chandran is curating Projects revolving around Kathakali, Chhau, and Contemporary dance and Rumiyana, a puppet theatre performance on great Sufi mystic, poet, and philosopher Rumi.

‘On The Move’, curated by Mayuri Upadhyay, is to showcase young dancers from all over India and hip-hop, popping and locking, waacking, break, krump, and b-boying, among other dance styles.

There will be plenty of workshops to engage audiences at the festival, including culinary, theatre, movement, and music workshops. Speaking about the overall Programming, Ms. Smriti Rajgarhia, Director, Serendipity Arts Foundation, said, “We are back with an interdisciplinary arts festival which has shows and performances across the visual arts, the performing arts, and the culinary arts. This year we hope to take over the city, with a project in every corner, making Panjim the culture hub for this part of the world.”

Various Talks and Symposiums have been lined up as the Festival, with topical sessions like The Future of Art with Technology, and A Workshop of NFT’s: A Game Changer for the Arts & Creative Economy aims to clarify questions around art and technology.

The Festival, now in its fifth year, wants to pave the way for future research on how to improve public participation. The objective is still the same: to build a resilient, cooperative, and common platform to promote South Asia’s shared cultural legacy and foster international outreach.

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Author: Planet Goa Team
For us at Planet-Goa, our team is driven by that feeling of exhilaration that one gets when discovering that something ‘unique’ and ‘new’ about Goa for our ever-so-discerning readers.

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