Culture Monks is a collective comprised of individuals from different walks of life.
Core Performance Group
The core performance group team of Culture Monks are as follows :
Pradip Chattopadhyay is musician, performer & a sound artist. He has been the founding member of Ḿohiner Ghoraguli´ which has been an iconic rock band in Bengal. An civil engineer by training, he has traveled the world to perform and work. He is a prolific performer and is passionate about his experiments & research in sound and performance.
Janardan Ghosh is an actor & theatre director, storyteller and a playwright from Kolkata, who has been experimenting with both forms and themes in his performances. Indeed much of the past work has explored the themes of spirituality, myth, gender, sexuality and society. he is currently completing his doctorate in ´Performance and Shri Ramakrishna from the Ramakrishna Mission University. Janardan Ghosh has trained and worked with several international and national theatre and film directors and is a critically acclaimed theatre practitioner in contemporary Bengal.
A spoken word performer, independent media analyst, curator and a performance consultant by profession, Mr Parnab Mukherjee is one of the leading alternative theatre directors of the Indian sub-continent.
A performance text writer and charismatic performer, he has diverse experience in non-proscenium, verbatim, site-specific and physical theatre.
Parnab is multilingual & a prolific traveler. He is a subject matter expert on North East India studies at Colombia University, USA. He works on several United Nations projects as a performer dealing with human rights.
Saikat Surai is a Crossmedia practitioner based in Kolkata, whose work stretches across videos, installations, print-making, animation and painting. He is also a relentless designer who has designed major architectural projects, namely the Kolkata Movietone Studios, Kolkata, among other things. His opus reflects the changing city, its gentrification and the much sought after utopia inextricably linked with the urban living. The artist has participated in numerous exhibitions and artist residencies, among which Water: Curse or Blessing (AEDES, Germany, Curated by Ula Giesler, 2010); Tracing the Human Trail: metaphors of the frontiers ( Khoj International Artists’ Association, New Delhi, curated by Oindrilla Maity Surai, 2011); Anxieties of the Periphery (Gallery OED, Kochin, curated by Oindrilla Maity Surai, 2010); Art Against Terrorism (Aakriti Art Gallery, Kolkata, 2009); Boat Project (an initiative of Khoj Kolkata, 2010) and Minute Per Image (TIFA Working Studios, Pune, curated by Sharmila Samant and Rucha Kulkarni) are notable. He was invited by the Asian Culture Centre, Gwangju, South Korea to collaborate with the countries contemporary artists’ circle, leading to a pan-Asian exhibition in 2012. Saikat is currently a mentor at Art1st, a leading Indian organization for Visual Arts training across the country.
Francesca Fini is a new media artist and a film maker who lives in Rome, Italy . She is one of the leading performance artists in Europe. She is constantly pushing the boundaries of aesthetics through experimentation with media, forms and structures of expressibility. She is the co – founder of the first ever live facebook channel for screening performance art content called Ṕerformance Art TV´.
Baishampayan Saha is a photographer, film – maker and a new media artist. As an independent photographer, he took part in a number of group exhibitions including Loneliness Of An Activist: a curated show at Birla Academy Of Art Culture in Kolkata (a thematic extension of the concept travelled to Singapore International School-Mumbai and Red Dot Gallery-Colombo), a series on Stephen Court fire for Kindle’s summer workshop production, Ahmedabad International Art Festival for two years (with images of Tagore’s childhood residence in Ahmedabad and historic Gujri Bazaar respectively), inaugural Atelier Theatre Festival at Gyan Manch, theatre intervention as a part of Binayak Sen campaign at Lamakan in Hyderabad and Prakriti Foundation Chennai’s touring production of Hind Swaraj.
In her own words , “My journey through life takes me to strange places, within and without of me; and everywhere, the strangeness melts into sweet familiarity! I am a Light-seeker.”
Sudipta Dawn is a curator, performance designer, and a performance writer. He also looks after the organization of Culture Monks, its public relations and communication. Sudipta is a commerce graduate from St. Xavierś College, Kolkata, has been a sports coach, held corporate jobs in various capacities & is involved in the climate change movement.
Sourabh Datta Gupta
Avik Guha Thakurta