World War One’s Hidden Voices: documentary and art in two parallel exhibitions

India, Africa, the West Indies, colonialism and recruitment, impacts of war and our ongoing culture of war explored in two parallel exhibitions under the title World War One’s Hidden Voices

World War One's Hidden Voices
The Poppy Retake (v3)
by Kooj Chuhan // From the Shadows of War and Empire by Southern Voices // #poppyretake

On show 7th December 2017 – 24th February 2018
at Manchester Central Library
(First Floor), St Peter’s Square, Manchester M2 5PD, UK // Opening times 9am-8pm Mon-Thurs and 9am-5pm Fri-Sat (Sunday closed) Tel. +44 (0)161 234 1983

OPENING NIGHT – 6th December 2017 5.30pm-7.30pm
including speakers Ahmed El-Hassan (Southern Voices) and Colette Williams (Mbari), plus live performance from Jaydev Mistry (music), Rani Moorthy (dramatised readings) and Kuljit ‘Kooj’ Chuhan (VJ projection) // First Floor exhibition from 5.30pm, then speakers and performance from 6.30pm on Ground Floor
Booking for this free event is strongly advised: www.hiddenvoicesww1.eventbrite.co.uk

MINI-CONFERENCE – 10th February 2018
thought-provoking talks, workshops, films and discussion for World War One’s Hidden Voices – full details to be announced www.metaceptive.net/poppy-retake

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The Poppy RetakeTHE POPPY RETAKE (v3)

…colonial narratives, spirits from the dead and video war games…

video art installation by Kooj (Kuljit Singh Chuhan) – new version

Modern war propaganda began with World War I which obscured its pointlessness and deep colonial connections, while pretending to be the ‘war to end all wars’. This artwork explores coercion into war, involving an African woman working for a war-themed park. She finds herself caught between colonial narratives, spirits from the dead and video war games.

Since the end of WWI we have seen numerous wars with the majority in regions once colonised. Modern video gaming is now the epitome of obscuring both the horror and the colonial roots of much conflict. The Poppy Retake suggests our multiple connections with wars as forms of cultural recruitment but which impact mostly on people from ex-colonies. It extends the perspectives developed in the documentary exhibition ‘From The Shadows Of War and Empire’. Continue reading

Progressive media: Poster Film Collective in the 80s and other online pieces

Selected posts by Kooj Chuhan during July or so on Metaceptive’s Facebook page :

Poster Film Collective progressive media in the 80s

Whose World Is The World by Poster Film Collective progressive media in the 80s. Any parallels now? http://poster-collective.org.uk/whoseworld/index.php
These posters were often in the youth clubs and community centres that we worked in, running creative, campaigning and discussion activities focused on anti-racist and suppressed historical ideas and knowledge. They gave a continuity in the environment that the people who used the building could continue to reflect on after the activities and workshops, in an immediate and visual way without too much text clutter. I really think we need this kind of stuff again in our physical environment, maybe the digital world makes us forget these possibilities?

Migrant crisis: tackle the cause and not the symptom?

The Chance Or Choice report suggests long term answer lies in foreign policy.
http://www.refugeecouncil.org.uk/latest/news/842_new_research_shows_asylum_seekers_do_not_choose_to_come_to_the_uk
A key paragraph from the report:

refugeeCouncil_chanceOrChoice_1426518702

ADDRESSING THE CAUSES OF FORCED MIGRATION
Given the strength of evidence on the underlying causes of asylum flows, policy efforts should focus on the root causes of forced migration (conflict and human rights abuse) rather than policies intended to prevent and deter asylum seekers from arriving. This will require joined-up policy making at the UK and EU level in relation to the promotion of human rights, humanitarian action, development aid and trade and investment (Castles et al. 2003).
Download the full report here: http://www.refugeecouncil.org.uk/assets/0001/5702/rcchance.pdf
A detailed read but it makes sense – unlike most of the media reports.

Colonialism, Africa, Sustainable Food, Environment

How did ‪#‎colonialism‬ affect sustainable food in ‪#‎Africa‬? ‪#‎WalterRodney‬ explains, connecting ‪#‎race‬ with ‪#‎environment‬. Essential for raising political and cultural consciousness.
http://www.walterrodneyfoundation.org/12th-annual-walter-rodney-symposium-biographies/

Exhibition by Shahidul Alam on indigenous women’s rights

Posters in the meeting room where Kalpana and her comrades used to gather. Khagrachori. CHT. Photo: Shahidul Alam/Drik/Majority World

Posters in the meeting room where Kalpana and her comrades used to gather. Khagrachori. CHT. Photo: Shahidul Alam/Drik/Majority World

Recent exhibition about Kalpana Chakma indigenous women’s rights activist in Bangladesh, by Shahidul Alam. Excellent!
Extract: “You had reminded us that a nation that fought oppression, could not rule by oppressing. That a people that fought for a language, could not triumph by suppressing another’s. That the martyrs who died, so we might be free, did not shed their blood, so we could become tyrants. That we who overcame the bullets and bayonets of soldiers, must never again be ruled through the barrel of a gun.”
http://www.shahidulnews.com/kalpanas-warriors – again, an example of artistic work towards cultural consciousness.

Murders of environmental activists in Brazil

Half the killings worldwide of ‪#‎conservation‬ ‪#‎activists‬ are in Brazil. Story of ‪#‎ChicoMendes‬ is inspiring http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/dec/20/brazil-salutes-chico-mendes-25-years-after-murder   and vital to understand the continuing politics in Brazil today. Apart from this brief Guardian article I’d recommend reading the book “Fight For The Forest: Chico Mendes in His Own Words”.

Exxon-Mobil massively fund climate denial
Exxon-Mobil spent vast amounts of money over decades to promote ‪#‎climatedenial‬ . Can they be held to account? http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jul/08/exxon-climate-change-1981-climate-denier-funding

Amnesty International on Israel’s civilian targets:
New forensic 3d modelling by Amnesty International shows Israel’s targeting of civilians in Gaza; tools for truth are always needed and this is a well put together media clip – good work.

https://www.facebook.com/ajplusenglish/videos/595303030611208

Black Women Matter:
100 years ago, Thomas Rutling was buried in Harrogate – he spoke out against the brutalities still endured by Africans in America after slavery. 100 years later & we are still speaking out – there must be hope for the future.
https://www.facebook.com/forharriet/videos/910802722299848

Does ‪#‎film‬ industry in UK have ‪#‎institutionalracism‬ rearing its ugly head? http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/features/does-britain-have-a-problem-with-race-when-it-comes-to-film-distribution-10364511.html
Some important arguments put forward in this article.

Revolutionary poetry in Pakistan
Awarded ‪#‎LeninPeacePrize‬, twice nominated for ‪#‎NobelPeacePrize‬, imprisoned in Pakistan, spend time with Yasser Arafat during exile, was a journalist in Soviet Russia, married and English woman, wrote about African independence during a trip to Kenya… Faiz Ahmed Faiz, he was a revolutionary poet of huge stature. I think he really needs some wider recognition outside Urdu poetry circles. (see example video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRVEfc5zcoE)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faiz_Ahmad_Faiz

Royal Family’s ties with Hitler and the Nazi’s are finally revealed.
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/jul/19/nazi-hitler-royal-family

Eye-opening video by the Quakers about the militarisation of schools, strongly related to national identity and foreign policy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OgJ83yYIR1g

Silence Would Be Treason performance by Platform plus Footprint Modulation events weekend

Silence Would Be Treason / Footprint Modulation

performance, poetry, music, film event by arts-activists Platform on Sunday 28th June
+ weekend of events as part of the Footprint Modulation exhibition 27th-29th June
Justice campaign for Ken Saro-Wiwa; divestment from corrupt fuel; diaspora responses to climate refugees; miners and workers rights.  In partnership with the international conference ‘Human Migration and the Environment’ www.durhamconference.eu at Durham University

Silence Would Be Treason performance by PlatformFive events over three days 27th-29th June as a part of Footprint Modulation exhibition – art and interventions exploring climate change, global justice and human displacement www.footprintmodulation.net . Download PDF flyer-programme HERE .

SUNDAY 28TH JUNE (a great day out!)
7pm-11pm PERFORMANCE NIGHT: Oil, politics, poetry with a performance by Platform ‘Silence Would Be Treason’ and also Transition Durham – at EMPTY SHOP HQ
4.30pm-6.30pm DEBATE-DISCUSSION: Workers rights, migration, miners and climate change – at Miners’ Hall
2pm-4pm ARTIST PRESENTATIONS + DISCUSSION: Connecting migrant realities in the UK – at Oriental Museum

SATURDAY 27TH JUNE
2pm-4pm PANEL DISCUSSION: Art, Climate Change, Migration and Activism – at Durham Art Gallery

MONDAY 29TH JUNE
6.30pm FILM SCREENING + PANEL DISCUSSION: ‘EXIT’ film by Diller Scofidio + Renfro – at Appleby Theatre, Geography West Building, Durham University (free, but registration necessary at www.exitfilm.eventbrite.co.uk)

webcast-wendy-brown_sw+ LIVE WEBCASTS OF KEYNOTE CONFERENCE SESSIONS
29th June – 1st July

Selected keynote presentations will be webcast live! No special software needed.
http://metaceptive.net/footprint-modulation/webcast/

 

PREVIEW – Watch a short extract of the interview with Shahidul Alam on YouTube, right now:


  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pC8GOonSSjI

FULL DETAILS BELOW (incl. performance by Platform):

Continue reading

Launch of Footprint Modulation – art exhibition exploring climate migration

FOOTPRINT MODULATION
An exhibition of art and interventions exploring climate change, global justice and human displacement across five venues in Durham, UK.
5th June – 5th July 2015 
www.footprintmodulation.net

FOOTPRINT MODULATION_horizontalPromoWide2text_750x184Exhibition Preview and Launch
Thursday 4th June, 6pm-8pm at Durham Art Gallery   www.dlidurham.org.uk

The preview evening’s gathering will include presentations by Kooj Chuhan (artistic director), Maya Chowdhry (co-producer), Dr Andrew Baldwin (Geography Dept, Durham University) and selected artists.  Launching an art exhibition exploring climate migration and displacement,  includes live poetry by Sai Murray, short screening + more to be announced…

You can join this event on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/events/1385392818458056/

The exhibition runs 5th June – 5th July 2015 at five venues:
DURHAM ART GALLERY / ORIENTAL MUSEUM / MINERS HALL / EMPTY SHOP HQ / DURHAM UNIVERSITY
+ Special Events Weekend 27th-29th June

Artworks and contributions from:
SHAHIDUL ALAM : PLATFORM (LONDON) : KOOJ CHUHAN : MAYA CHOWDHRY : MAZAHER : TRACEY ZENGENI : APU CHOWDHURY : TRANSITION DURHAM : DILLER, SCOFIDIO + RENFRO : UK CLIMATE CHANGE & MIGRATION COALITION : MIKA LAIHO : SAI MURRAY & SELINA NWULU : DAVE DOUGLASS : NIGEL HULETT : JUDY PRICE & ANDREW CONIO : GEOGRAPHY@DURHAM UNI

A Metaceptive project in partnership with the international conference ‘Human Migration and the Environment: Futures, Politics and Invention’ at Durham University 28th June – 1st July 2015 www.durhamconference.eu

Sai Murray to read some poetry at this event

Sai Murray to read some poetry at this event

An exhibition exploring climate migration:

Popular ideas of climate change rarely connect with migration even though migration is probably the largest human consequence of climate change. The creative work presented here moves on from often didactic climate-art approaches from a decade ago without ducking strong critiques, and harnesses fresh perspectives from migrants and global voices.

Artists and activists at all levels from internationally acclaimed to local and emerging, and from countries including Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Iran, Brazil and Australia are involved in this exhibition exploring climate migration. Footprint Modulation culminates in a fantastic weekend of public performance, film screenings and discussions involving artists, activists, performers, community members and researchers, and which dovetails neatly into the final conference at Durham University.

Artistic director, curation and project management – Kooj (Kuljit Chuhan) of Metaceptive Projects and Media.
Collaborative research partner and conference chair – Dr Andrew Baldwin, Geography Dept, Durham University.
Artistic producer and transmedia consultant – Maya Chowdhry.

FootprintModulationLogoSpread_1000x321

Maria Benevides on Eco-Brazil, Chico Mendes, Forests and Water: live link confirmed

Maria Benevides on Eco-Brazil, Chico Mendes, Forests and Water

Maria Benevides

The exhibition opening for ‘Chamada From Chico Mendes’ will talk using live video with Maria Benevides on Eco-Brazil, Chico Mendes, Forests and Water on Saturday 28th February 2015 at Global Grooves Arts Centre (MAP).  This will bring some of the realities that people in Brazil are currently facing direct to the audience at the event, where the audience will be able to ask questions chaired by the poet Sai Murray who has worked for some years on issues of climate justice and is the MC for the event.

Chico Mendes, Forests and Water – the context for a digital art work

‘Chamada From Chico Mendes’ is a digital art work by Kooj Chuhan made up of art and documentary video, imagery, poetry and sound from across the world – full details at www.metaceptive.net/chamada . Visitors encounter a range of objects which they can play like instruments, which then spark off visuals, music and words from guest artists, film-makers and environmental activists.  Kooj describes it as an “exhibition within an installation” because of the wide range of material that the audience can view and interact with.

Its starting point is the powerful story of Chico Mendes, who was a Brazilian rubber tapper, trade union leader and environmentalist committed to protecting the Amazon’s ecosystem. He had opposition from industrialists and corrupt government officials, was jailed, fined and threatened, and just over 25 years ago he was eventually murdered but has now become a national hero in Brazil.  “Chamada” means a ‘call to all’ in Portuguese, and the exhibition is about other voices contributing their parallel experience to that of Chico Mendes.

During the evening event, which includes live performance, guided tour, poetry and food, Maria will talk to us live from Brazil and will discuss:

– What are the important issues for climate change in Brazil?
– How is Chico Mendes is understood in Brazil?
– What influence did he have?
– Which other people are doing that kind of work now?
– What are the difficulties right now for people doing this kind of work?
– How serious are the water shortages and what are the future issues that they raise?

If you can’t make it to the event, maybe because you are too far away, the event will be webcast live at 7.30pm GMT (UK time).  You will be able to watch it on ANY device that can play a YouTube video, and you will be able to type in any comments or questions live during the event.  The web address for the webcast is: http://metaceptive.net/chamada/live-webcast/ or directly from this YouTube page https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZRjDjx-TjE0 .

About Maria Benevides:

Maria Benevides is a Brazilian journalist working for NGOs, research institutions and think thanks on media relations and content production related to environmental issues. She has previously worked as a producer for the BBC World Service and the BBC Media Action in London.  She also acted as a UNHCR spokesperson in Angola, UNDP’s press officer in Brazil, IRIN’s editor in South Africa and Head of Communications for the British Embassy in Brazil. Her continuing interests are in green economy, sustainable development, the Amazon forest and the people living there.

video - legacy of chico mendes

Videos about Chico Mendes and Wangari Maathai now online:

There is a great video about Chico Mendes as told by his close collaborator Marcos Afonso now online:
http://metaceptive.net/chamada/chico-mendes/
. This is accompanied by an excellent article ‘Martyr of the Amazon: The legacy of Chico Mendes’ by Kate Evans / CIFOR, well worth the read.  “At first I thought I was fighting to save the rubber trees; then I thought I was fighting to save the Amazon rainforest.  Now I realise I am fighting for humanity,” Mendes famously said. Continue reading

Digital Art, Carnival, Environmental Activism and Documentary

‘CHAMADA FROM CHICO MENDES’

Digital Art meets Afro-Brazilian carnivalCHAMADA FROM CHICO MENDES combines Digital Art, Afro-Brazilian Carnival, Environmental Activism. Installation art by Kooj Chuhan.

Interactive Digital Carnival Installation by artist Kooj Chuhan, inspired by environmental activism stories from across the world – including Chico Mendes.
SPECIAL OPENING EVENTS SAT 28th FEB incl. Film Screening, discussion, Multimedia Music Performance, live Brazil link, interviews, poetry and free food! Full details: http://metaceptive.net/chamada/

at Global Grooves Centre until 21st March. 10 mins walk from Mossley station – just 20 mins train from Manchester, only £4 off-peak day return ticket! (MAP)

– 4pm: Film “TAKING ROOT: WANGARI MAATHAI” + discussion.

– 7pm: LIVE PERFORMANCE by Kooj/Holly/Leon, guided tour, poetry by Sai Murray, live link with Brazil environmentalists + Free Food!

FREE TICKETS at: https://chamada-from-chico-mendes.eventbrite.co.uk/

MORE DETAILS

A digital art work inspired by Brazilian activist Chico Mendes, made up of voices, imagery and sound from across the world. Visitors encounter a range of objects which they can play like instruments, which then spark off videos, music and poetry from guest artists, documentary filmmakers and environmental activists.  A pioneering attempt to combine Digital Art, Carnival, Environmental Activism and Documentary. Continue reading

Future Leaders – a new film by Kooj Chuhan / Metaceptive Media

A lively documentary profile of the inspiring national apprenticeship and training programme in carnival arts has just been released: Future Leaders – a new film by Kooj Chuhan / Metaceptive Media.  Anyone interested in arts, young people, communities, carnival, music, dance, visual arts, multi-cultural development and so on should find this interesting.

Full information about this fantastic arts programme which is run by Global Grooves is at www.futureleaders.org.uk .  Video created by Kooj Chuhan / Metaceptive Media.  [This video is also published on the Global Grooves YouTube channel where a lot more people have seen it – at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9B7uaoWYpcc ]

Includes an interview with Steve White – who was the drummer with the Style Council (Paul Weller) and other worthwhile bands. Continue reading

‘Doh Mix Meh Up’ Diaspora Art incl. Buy This v3 by Kooj Chuhan

On 1st Nov, ‘Doh Mix Meh Up’ Diaspora Art event and exhibition in Oxford explored Diaspora and Identity in Art, great work and a provocative panel discussion involving Dr Jennifer Langer, Sharelly Emanuelson, Dr Hélène Neveu Kringelbach, Sunil Shah and chaired by Alpha Abebe.  I especially felt Kringelbach’s presentation developed very well both the strength and difficulties of the diaspora role in relation to a post-colonial framework.

'Doh Mix Meh Up' Diaspora Art Oxford 1st Nov 2014 'Doh Mix Meh Up' Diaspora Art Oxford 1st Nov 2014

Featured artists include: Pablo & Roxana Allison, Raymond Antrobus, Phoebe Boswell, Rosa Couloute, Scarlett Crawford, David Creedon, Afra Dekie, Sharelly Emanuelson, JJ Bola, Justice in Motion, Belinda Kazeem-Kaminski, Lynette Letic, Caroline Molloy, Melissa Tandiwe Myambo, Miyuki Okuyama, Kajal Nisha Patel, Sharon Paz, Mikaela Toczek, Kooj Chuhan/Virtual Migrants and Clare Walter.

Curated by: Sunil Shah.

‘Doh Mix Meh Up’ is a one-day international art exhibition and performance programme featuring artists and artworks selected from an open call entitled ‘Exploring Diaspora through the Arts’. The event brings together artist works, photography, film, spoken word poetry, theatre and a panel discussion as a way of exploring the varied and multifaceted experiences of those around the world who have moved from home to make a new life elsewhere. Continue reading

Doh Mix Meh Up exhibition in Oxford presents video art by Kooj Chuhan

This weekend on 1st Nov 2014 the ‘Doh Mix Meh Up’ Exhibition in Oxford presents video art by Kooj Chuhan / Virtual Migrants, titled “Buy This (v3)” on race-migration-climate issues which is itself detailed at this page: http://metaceptive.net/buy-this-v3-video-installation-art .

The ‘Doh Mix Meh Up’ exhibition

Doh Mix Meh Up exhibition in Oxford presents video art by Kooj Chuhan

More info:

‘Doh Mix Meh Up’ – Diaspora and Identity in Art
A free one-day exhibition and performance programme exploring the role of the arts in understanding, expressing and experiencing diaspora.

https://www.facebook.com/events/649558785140456

1st November 2014, 3pm – 10pm
Panel Discussion:  ‘Exploring Diaspora through the Arts’, 6pm
Drinks reception, 7pm

Venue:  Old Fire Station,  40 George St, Oxford, OX1 2AQ

Featured artists: Pablo & Roxana Allison, Raymond Antrobus, Phoebe Boswell, Rosa Couloute, Scarlett Crawford, David Creedon, Afra Dekie, Sharelly Emanuelson, JJ Bola, Justice in Motion, Belinda Kazeem-Kaminski, Lynette Letic, Caroline Molloy, Melissa Tandiwe Myambo, Miyuki Okuyama, Kajal Nisha Patel, Sharon Paz, Mikaela Toczek, Kooj Chuhan/Virtual Migrants and Clare Walter.
Curated by: Sunil Shah. Continue reading