Artists Unite: Chalo Lal Qila
February 28, 2019
“In the dark times
Will there also be singing?
Yes, there will also be singing.
About the dark times.”
More than 200 artists, poets, writers, singers, performers, theatre artists, photographers and filmmakers have come together to celebrate and demonstrate unity through their art.
The "Artists Unite!" platform will hold a national convention in Delhi on 2 & 3 March 2019, and simultaneously similar events nationwide on these dates. The idea behind the convention of artists "is to weigh in with a collective voice, and with a creative energy that asserts arts and literature as a means of resistance to the hate politics that is sweeping the country and to mitigate the challenges to democracy."
The two-day event in Delhi will see performances from music artists like Prabhdeep, Rabbi Shergill, Delhi Sultanate, Begum X, and Shubham Mudgal among others. Popular poets like Ashok Vajpeyi, Akhil Katyal, Manglesh Dabral will also grace the event with their poetry readings. A Photo exhibition by the likes of like Dayanita Singh, Gauri Gill, Ronny Sen and many other acclaimed artists will also remain on display for the public on both days.
In December 2018, more than 450 artists from diverse fields and locations had signed a declaration against the assault on culture. The document titled, “Artists Unite! for Democracy | against Hate” was signed by well-known names including artists Atul Dodiya, Nalini Malini, Vivan Sundaram; art critic and historian Geeta Kapur; dancers Aditi Mangaldas, Mallika Sarabhai and Navtej Johar; film-makers Anand Patwardhan, Chitra Palekar, Kiran Rao, Nandita Das, Shonali Bose; screenwriters Anjum Rajabali, Vinay Shukla and Shama Zaidi; actors Naseeruddin Shah and Ratna Pathak Shah; musicians Neela Bhagwat, Rahul Ram, T M Krishna and Vidya Rao; and photographers Dayanita Singh and Sudharak Olwe. poets Adil Jussawala, K. Satchidanandan; pupeteer Dadi Pudumjee; theatre practitioners Mahesh Dattani, Mahesh Eklunchwar and Sunil Shanbag, and writers Arundhati Roy, G N Devy, Githa Hariharan, Jerry Pinto, Shanta Gokhale, Shashi Deshpande. The list now includes over 700 names.
The statement declared that, "Democracy is not a majoritarian project to identify enemies and enforce uniformity of language, behaviour and culture. Democracy is the celebration of a collective will for peace, of living together with dignity and equality." The posters, illustrated below, echo this sentiment.
Indian History Basics! (2 minute read)
Picture abhi baaki hai, mere dost!
Sapnon ke Saudagar, We see through you!
WHEN A PERSON IS LYNCHED FOR THE FOOD HE HAD,
IT IS THE CONSTITUTION WHICH GETS LYNCHED.
– Justice Chandrachud
K̶E̶E̶P̶ ̶Q̶U̶I̶E̶T̶ ̶A̶B̶O̶U̶T̶ ̶W̶H̶A̶T̶ ̶H̶A̶P̶P̶E̶N̶E̶D̶*
Strike out silence!
Democracy cannot be mere propaganda.
CENSORSHIP DOES NOT MAKE SENSE
CENSORSHIP CAN NOT MAKE SENSE!Come, Let us also raise our hands
We, Who have forgotten all rites and passages
We, Who have forgotten our idols, our gods
We, Who only remember the burning passion of love
It begins with Awareness
Roti Kapda Makan
We know how to Love
Give Peace a Chance
All images courtesy Posters Unite.
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