The British Council Cultural Centre in collaboration with Dhaka Art Summit 2020, arranged a four-day workshop at the Asian University for Women, conducted by the Otolith Group. 12 students from six different countries/nationalities participated in the workshop.
The artworks of Anjalika Sagar and Kodwo Eshun of the Otolith Group continually stage inquiries into existing histories and speculative futures across South Asia. In returning to and departing from cultural histories and futures in South Asia and in Bengal, the culturally rich region was divided in the partition of 1947 into the Indian state of West Bengal and East Pakistan, which was liberated to become Bangladesh in 1971. The digital videos of The Otolith Group pose questions of futurity, modernity, collectivity, alienation, mutation and world-making in ways that are both universal and specific to the region.
With these questions in mind, Sagar and Eshun have chosen Otolith artworks that speak to address the urgencies of the present. The moving images selected for ‘Narrative vehicles for transtemporal travel’ are linked by the ongoing concern to formulate a science fiction of the present using historical and contemporary images and sounds.
Through a close engagement with the works screened in 'Narrative vehicles for transtemporal travel,' the methods formulated by The Otolith Group become available for discussion and debate during the workshop. By discussing the ideas, decisions, reasons and arguments for treating the technologies of images, sounds, voices and colours as narrative vehicles for transtemporal travel, these approaches become available for use in the present and the future.
The 12 students participated in these discussions and received hands-on experience on film making as well, which will inspire them for their future endeavour. Later on, the participants paid a visit to the Dhaka Art Summit held at the Shilpakala Academy in Dhaka.