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Goa celebrates its past

This weekend kicks off a celebration of Goa’s history as two exhibitions turn the spotlight on the state’s historical legacy.

Layers, curated by Aparajita Bhasin, unveils at Goa Chitra Museum, Benaulim while Unravelling Stories, curated by Lina Vincent, will be inaugurated at the Carpe Diem Gallery, Majorda, both starting tomorrow, July 14, 2019.

The Goa Chitra Museum is known for its extensive collection of artefacts connected to the tourist state’s agrarian roots – over 40,000 are showcased under this one roof alone. Agricultural tools, traditional distillery tools, fishing tools and implements, coconut oil processing tools, traditional pottery, cane woven objects, religious objects of the Catholic and Hindu faiths narrate the history of Goa through objects, texts and oral histories.

Layers showcases Goa Chitra Museum’s precious assets and explores powerful visualisation tools that place audiences at the centre of immersive experiences. Supported by Tata Trusts, the exhibition was developed with the Archival and Museum Fellowship from the India Foundation for the Arts in collaboration with Goa Chitra Museum.

Bhasin collaborated with Krishnan Ghosh from the design and innovation consultancy Quicksand Design Studio’s Games Lab to digitally document and select objects from the museum to create 3D models using cutting-edge technology such as VR/ AR.

Layers harnesses virtual reality and augmented reality to tell the story of the museum’s artefacts. Visitors will be able to view a virtual reality film which contextualises the artefacts from the museum in a surreal, virtual world. Bhasin, a project manager and researcher at Quicksand Design Studio, explores art intervention in public spaces and its implications on local communities since her post-graduation in History of Art from the University of York.

Lina Vincent is a trained artist and art historian. After realizing her capacity to interpret artists’ works and build dialogues between artists and their audiences, Vincent started feeling inclined towards the curation of spaces, within which various interconnected aspects can be explored. Vincent says, “I have had the opportunity to work with established and young artists, practising with different mediums, and each compilation and exhibition is a learning experience and brings out multidimensional experiences for everyone involved.” She adds, “It’s now almost twenty years that I have been working in the area. The beauty of group exhibitions is the kind of relationship that develops between different artists’ works, and how stories come together to celebrate a theme”.

These unique exhibitions are taking place at different locations in south Goa. Patrons of the arts are encouraged to travel to both venues in Majorda and Benaulim and experience the spectrum of creation inspired by the Goa Chitra collection.