[Reader-list] Pad.ma Newsletter 1

Pad.ma Newsletter newsletter at pad.ma
Mon Mar 15 20:58:55 IST 2010

*Pad.ma Newsletter I

Pad.ma’s monthly newsletter contains information about new contributions
to the archive (videos and writing), featured videos lists,
announcements, Pad.ma projects and events, etc. This month, we bring you
eight new video collections (55 new videos), a public call for Pad.ma
fellowships, some highlights from the archive, and a new and updated
‘How to use Pad.ma’ guide.

For Pad.ma, this is the beginning of a new phase of content
development*. *It is also in anticipation of a new software framework
and interface (expected in summer 2010), which will make working with
Pad.ma easier and more rewarding. Meanwhile, we welcome your
contributions (video, text or thoughts) to this growing public
collection of material.

Pad.ma is an interpretative web-based video archive, which works
primarily with footage and not finished films. Pad.ma creates access to
material which is easily lost in editing processes, in the filmmaking
economy, and in changes of scale brought about by digital technology.
Unlike Youtube, the focus here is on annotation, cross-linking,
downloading and the reuse of video material for pedagogy, research and
reference. For more, see http://pad.ma/about.

*>>> What’s new <<<


> *Theatre Jam
* In October 2009, Maraa, a media collective from Bangalore, did a
31-day marathon of performances in public spaces, in an effort to
reclaim them for artistic expression. Theatre workshops, photography
exhibitions and poetry readings took place in parks, markets and cafés.
An on-going series that begins to document Maraa’s interventions in the

*> Politics of Change
*Annemie Maes, an artist and researcher from Brussels, started the
Politics of Change project when she visited Barefoot College, Tilonia,
Rajasthan, in 2008. Maes was struck by the similarity between the
bottom-up approach of the solar engineering programme for rural
Rajasthani women and her own artistic practice at Okno, an organisation
that works on collective technological research projects. Maes has
uploaded to Pad.ma her film /Mahila/, video questionnaires from PoC
workshops, and interviews with Rajasthani and African solar engineers,
and friends and colleagues from Brussels.

*> People’s Panchayats against Homophobia
*Action Plus, a network of 14 organisations working on HIV/AIDS in
India, organised People’s Panchayats on stigma and homophobia in
Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Pune and Delhi in early 2009. Forefronted
were the voices of survivors and resistors from sexual minority
communities. Point of View, Mumbai, documented these panchayats:
depositions, testimonies, audience responses, and the jury’s ‘verdict’
at the end. A large and growing collection of voices.

*> Lectures from CSCS, Bangalore
*Lectures from the ‘Culture and Democracy’ course at the Centre for the
Study of Society and Culture (CSCS), Bangalore. These lectures were
recorded in 2007 and invited speakers included Ashish Rajadhyaksha, M.
Madhava Prasad, S. V. Srinivas, Sitharamam Kakarala and Vivek
Dhareshwar. Welcome to the online, annotation-friendly classroom. Stay
logged in for future classes.

Currently published:
M. Madhava Prasad’s ‘Enthusiasm and Indian Politics: Problems in the
Analysis of Aural Culture’
Ashish Rajadhyaksha’s ‘Cinematic Governance’

*> Motornama Roshanara
*Rides through the industrial district around Roshanara Road, Delhi.
Tours on cycle rickshaws with rickshaw wallahs as narrators and guides.
Narratives of automation, pollution, labour and the closure of famed
repair industries. All this across a landscape characterised by lost
middle-class confidence, new migrants, old machines, bodily risk and
emerging eco-politics in the city of Delhi.  A project by Shaina Anand
and Ashok Sukumaran, as part of 48deg. C, Delhi, 2009.

*> Al Jaar Qabla al Daar (The Neighbour before the house)
*A series of video probes into the landscape of East Jerusalem. Shot
with a security camera, these videos attempt to overflow the
instrumental aspects of surveillance imaging. Looking from one’s home,
obsessively or longingly, becomes a way of narrating over the
architecture of a city in conflict. A continuing project by CAMP. This
is footage from one location in Jerusalem. More from other
neighbourhoods coming soon.

*> Wharfage
*Wharfage is another on-going CAMP project, which, in 2009, looked
closely at Sharjah port from where a large number of wooden boats or
dhows leave for Somalia. This movement of goods and sailors maps out a
landscape of new and used objects, labour, Asian and African migration
and oversized dhows now being built in Gujarat. Hakimuddin Liliyawala
spent time on Sharjah creek, documenting the loading and unloading of
the dhows, and wrote over these images. Nida Ghouse and Radhamohini
Prasad did a follow-up visit to Jam Salaya, to meet sailor friends they
had made in Sharjah.

*> Pad.ma Meta
*On February 16, 2009, Pad.ma was launched as a public website. We had a
day-long event in which people who have been engaging with Pad.ma, made
presentations about their use of the archive. Presenters included Sanjay
Kak, Agaaz, Ghar Bachao Ghar Banao Andolan, Ayisha Abraham, Sadanand
Menon, and Priya Sen, among others. This collection has videos of these
presentations and documentation of other Pad.ma events.
For a report on the Pad.ma 2009 event, see:


*>>> Pad.ma Highlight <<<*


Pad.ma’s commitment to making video footage publicly available has
motivated us to recirculate material under fair use. Contributors have
uploaded clips from Hindi films to Pad.ma and more importantly,
annotated them critically. This has created a innovative space for film
studies on the web, where ideas and timelines can come together. Some

*> Queering Bollywood*
A selection of some coded queer moments in seemingly mainstream and
heteronormative Indian films. A collection of queer readings of such
moments. And a database of video clips, film titles and articles on
queer representations in cinema. This video selection, put together by
Namita Malhotra, has clips from films like /Sholay/, /Sadak/, /Utsav/,
/Silsila/ and /Mera Naam Joker/. User contributions to this database are
invited. Write to pad.ma at pad.ma <mailto:padma at pad.ma>

*> Cinematic Cities and Citizenship
*Cinema constructs national consciousness: citizens and denizens,
centres and margins. Cinema archives the urban: planners and gangsters,
ambivalent modernities and urban villages. And cinema opens a virtual
window to the world. All for eight rupees – at least it did till some
time ago. A virtual tour of the city and the citizen in cinema with
Lawrence Liang.

> *The sex worker in Bollywood*

These clips from films like /Amar Prem/, /Umrao Jaan/ and /Mandi/ as
well as the more recent /Julie/, /Chameli/ and /Sadak/, explore the
popular concern with and presence of the sex worker in many Hindi film
genres (commercial, art house, historical and B-grade). The depictions
traverse a range of characters, including gharwalis and pimps to name a few.

*>>> Announcements <<<*


*> Fellowships*

Pad.ma invites applications for fellowships from individuals and
organisations interested in
   > contributing footage from a film or research project
   > annotating and researching material already in Pad.ma
   > experimenting with new ways of interpreting and using videos in the
Fellows will be offered honorariums and interested persons can write to
pad.ma at pad.ma <mailto:padma at pad.ma>

*> Pad.ma @ Home Works , Beirut*

Pad.ma will conduct a two week workshop and day-long colloquium at Home
Works V in Beirut, Lebanon, from April 12-25, 2010. Titled ‘Don’t Wait
for the Archive: Archiving practices and futures of the image’, this
workshop/colloquium seeks to discuss the archive as neither a fixed
concept nor as unbounded potential, but as a concrete set of
negotiations, costs, transactions, tools and imaginations that
constitute it. A key question will be: Is there something, in the
density of our contemporary experiences in Bombay, Bangalore, Beirut or
on the internet, that can lead to a shared theory of the archive, which
goes beyond its dominant canons? For more, see http://www.ashkalalwan.org/

*> Technical Tips for Pad.ma
*Feeling daunted by the Pad.ma interface? Can’t figure out how to
browse, search, upload or download videos, transcribe or annotate? Or
why you just can’t open Pad.ma in Internet Explorer? Fret not. The
up-to-date ‘How to Use Pad.ma’ guide is here: http://wiki.pad.ma/wiki/HowTo

* *

This newsletter was compiled by Pad.ma’s Content Coordinator, Subuhi
Jiwani, with the support of Zinnia Ambaripadwala, Pad.ma's Technical
Coordinator. Send your feedback and comments to subuhi at pad.ma
<mailto:subuhi at pad.ma> or pad.ma at pad.ma <mailto:padma at pad.ma>


The Pad.ma project was initiated in 2008 by Oil21 from Berlin, the
Alternative Law Forum from Bangalore, Majlis, Point of View and
Chitrakarkhana/CAMP, Mumbai.


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