Checkpoint Pandemic is a project which documents the evolving response to the current universal crisis caused by COVID – 19.
The crisis has thrown the whole world into a surreal space where the meaning of time has assumed different meaning.
The virus is not just a medical threat , there are other extremely important issues which are going to be affected due to this- including the ideological positions, policies, the quality of leadership, race , caste and religious relationships and our approach to climate change.
It is time to be direct and clear, for arts & theater to reach out to a larger number of people and take a clear stance. For the future of this planet depends on this. We will always be wrong and right in equal measure, but silent we cannot afford to be.
How is the world evolving through this crisis- from the personal to the political through lifestyle and policy decisions which we are making which addresses the levers of economy, power, society, environment & culture.
It’s Better This Way
by Pooja Das Choudhury
I like our world better this way
With people in confines for life
Skies clear and blue like never before
The feathered sing like the world’s a stage
Trees fuller, grass it’s best version of green
Wind billowing with gay abandon
Rain lashing about in flamenco
The wild, wilder free than just alive
Valleys deep in think less thought
Streams, brooks gurgling symphonies
The voiceless find their voices
This the world I dreamt of
those dark and icy nights
This the world…
When sunshine melts into moonlight
without the remains of a day.
FRONTAL CORTEX, a fragment of a film.
A glimpse into the mind of the author, the creator who confronts the created and fights an invisible battle…before scribbling his line.
Digital performance for webcam and synthesizer
by Francesca Fini
in collaboration with:
United Video Artists, Performance Art TV, Culture Monks, The Social Distancing Festival
A live interactive visual and sonic experience by Francesca Fini, dedicated to the Italian *piazzas* now quarantined, will be streamed on Facebook. This first session will concern the artist’s hometown, Rome.
The Italian squares are now silent and deserted, while life in quarantine is hidden invisibly inside the houses, inside the silent buildings that harmoniously surround them. And so the loners adventuring in the confined city are narrative elements of a dystopian and cinematic story, which the artist spies and pursues avidly, through motion tracking technology, transforming each movement into generative visual and sound in real-time.
The Italian *piazzas* are framed by a webcam system that broadcasts online the flow of their chaotic daily life. A cold, indifferent look, in the sun or in the rain, which does not change in the midst of changes. Those squares are now deserted, while life in quarantine is hidden invisibly inside the houses, inside the silent buildings that harmoniously surround them. The webcams today collect the testimony of a surreal event. Daily life, once feverish, has become a fleeting and ephemeral circumstance: the squares are manned by police vans, enlivened by the flight of a seagull, by a flag in the wind, by a runner’s bicycle, by a couple wearing masks while walking the dog. In the silent void, these short passing lives, these solitary adventures of the confined city, are narrative elements of a dystopian and cinematic story, which the artist spies and pursues avidly, as if she was at the window of one of those buildings. Through motion tracking technology, Francesca Fini steals the webcam feed and transmits it to a software, specially compiled for this project, which records and visually tracks the movement of people, vehicles, and animals, turning the data flow into a concert for synthesizer: movements generate sounds, modulations, graphic visualizations, digital effects. Finally, the artist returns everything to the network, through live streaming on Facebook, in a creative ring of real-time manipulations and interpretations.
Quarantine TV by Francesca Fini
MasterPeace ACT of Positivity : Creating Solidarity. Together !
Theatre + the way you make me feel
a project by Sudipta Dawn
Being tolerant is a duty – an ethical duty, a historical duty, a political duty but it does not demand that i lose my personality – Paulo Freire
A theatre project where the real time virtual space is the theatre.
Addressing racial profiling and discrimination in the wake of COVID- 19.
Keeping the virtual space free for dialogue, facilitating democracy and global citizenship.
” For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
But, as the passage now presents no hindrance
To the spirit unappeased and i peregine
Between two worlds become much like each other,
So i find words i never though to speak
In streets I never thought i should revisit
When i left my body on a distant shore.
Since our concern was speech, and speech impelled us
To purify the dialect of the tribe
And urge the mind to after sight and foresight ” – T . S. Eliot
In India, emerging as we were from serious communal polarization and large scale discontentment caused by the Citizen Amendment Bill and National Register of Citizens , which led to protests such as Shaheen Bagh and the post Delhi elections riots, we were caught unawares by this phenomena of COVID – 19.
Much of the template used by the dominant party and its supporters , which has sought to prevent the dissenting voices from expressing themselves in the open public forums through abuse and even threats of physical violence resulting from labeling them as anti national, communists, sickular, pressitute, etc, spilled over into their response to COVID – 19 scenario. Without proper assessment of the emerging scenario, the dominant forces ( the one in power or supporters of those in power) seek to keep all dissenting voices silent by not allowing for their expression in public forum, fearing that this crisis will dilute their stranglehold on the virtual space.
The resultant lockdown has of course been made into an excuse to instill the fear of persecution of dissenting voices with threats of legal action, arrests and imprisonment.
The following post on facebook . You can click on the image to follow the live feed from FB.
Performance : Say No to Racism
There is rapidly growing hatred growing against Chinese nationals and its getting directed at all people with features of Chinese origins.
Politicians like Trump and the likes have started attributing to the COVID- 19 virus a political agency ( China virus) to deflect criticism from their own inept handling.
Caught in the cross fire once again is humanity and the liberal ideals of Democracy.
Through handling of the various threats, using a non violent communicative commitment and process, it was possible to keep the conversation going and to gain the support of the maximum people who engaged with the post who in turn turned into the actors to helped to fight the illogical stance engaged participants who spewed hatred against China and held all Chinese people responsible for the evolution and spread of COVID- 19.
What could be observed in this act is that the defending party to the proposition applied logic, authenticity and peaceful means while the parties opposed used misinformation, references to fake news, racial bias to counter he proposition, in a tone which was abusive and threatening.
It is not to say that the opposing parties concerns about the role of the Chinese government is not without merit- it was discussed. However our submission was and is that whatever may be the point of view, people must be allowed to speak without fear of retribution and abuse.
The voting results so far .
Some snapshots of the act are displayed below.
We hope you’ll participate in the next episode of Theatre + the way you make me feel. The details will be posted on this website and also on the Culture Monks facebook page.
Harvard Business Review
Economics in the time of COVID – 19
The Most Important Theatre of our Times for the sake of the future of Humanity
It’s time to make it clear which side of the fence you are on.