The first edition of Sensorium Festival promises a small but serious showcase
A casual conversation over drinks planted the seed for Sensorium, a new arts festival that debuted on December 6 in Goa. Curated by novelist Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi and Prashant Panjiar, founder of the Delhi Photo Festival, it is a small but serious event that explores the intersection of photography, literature, fine art, architecture, cinema and history. “This is a place where artists come together to create original work. Unlike most festivals, where guests coast on opinion, here they’ve all made new and beautiful work,” begins Shanghvi.
At the festival—being conducted at the Sunaparanta Goa Centre for the Arts, in Panjim— photography has been used as the point of confluence. Panjiar explains that instead of organising a regular photo festival, they wanted to “enlarge the canvas and focus on the documentation of different forms of art through the lens.”
Spread over two months, the highlights include writer William Dalrymple speaking about his relative Julia Margaret Cameron, an influential 17th century photographer; Ritesh Batra, the director of The Lunchbox, presenting a digital photo show of dabbawallah; and Italian photographer Fausto Giaccone’s evocative tribute to author Gabriel Garcia Marquez. “I also love Farookh Chothia’s Jazz photographs, with an introduction by Salman Rushdie—the unseen images are lyrical; (scriptwriter) Sooni Taraporevala’s photo stills from Salaam Bombay, which she has combined with her original screenplay, giving me another way to think about photography; and Sohrub Hura’s deeply moving pictures of his mother—it’s my favorite novel of the season, writ large in pictures,” admits Shanghvi, adding that if there is another edition, he would like to explore music and politics.
Till February 5. Details: sgcfa.org/sensorium.php