The To-Gather project “Awaken the Sleeping Giants” explores hybridity and new formats in artistic practice looking through the larger lens of coexistence between humans and nonhuman life forms.
In its first phase, the project consisted of online, digital research meetings, discussing core questions.
Phase 2 saw the team gather together in person for the first time. A workshop for 10 artists from various European countries was also held by the team and took place in September-October 2022 in Lugano.
Phase 3 consisted of two workshops in India: a residential workshop in Kamshet, Maharashtra and another workshop in Bengaluru in February 2023.
The team explored hybridity through different exercises in the various locations.
Lugano: A curated, silent walk through the heart of the city-exploring both the known and the unknown, the wild and the manicured. The walk involved experiencing a physically arduous journey through one’s senses to see how ‘third nature’ coexists with the urban space.
Kamshet: This took place over two days where the participants explored the landscape through their senses, looking to find how the landscape spoke to them.
Bengaluru: An exploration in the heart of urban Bengaluru to see how third nature exists everywhere.
Critterverse: A universe inhabited by a Kritter with its own back story, a habitat and a life cycle. This exercise involved a digital walkthrough featuring the kritterverse.
Mind maps: Here participants created physical maps that took them on journeys from their childhood, and then to the present and to an imaginary future. These journeys were mapped on paper (not to scale) to reflect on the changing landscapes both real and imaginary as participants envisioned the future.
Hybrid Chance generator: a game that allots participants a genre, a discipline and a subject by luck of lottery, based on which they base their artistic creation/proposal
Participants in Lugano, Kamshet and Bengaluru took part in all the above activities.
Mapping the invisible was an activity that took place in Lugano and Bengaluru. The participants were asked to reverse the conventional notion of mapping as a tool of colonisation and power to imagine possible new forms of mapping and experience the landscape differently.
The following exercises took place only in Kamshet:
Zines in search of hybridity: At the residency in Kamshet, the participants explored the Hybridity through the creation of individual zines.
Wall Art: The question of “What do we leave behind?” was a constant during the residency at Kamshet and the participants decided to continue our exploration of Hybridity through a mural that we left behind.
Hybridity was also explored through the process of creating a meal with unlikely ingredients.
Participants and facilitators were asked to come with any two ingredients. The provocation was that a complete meal needed to be cooked for everyone on the campus, the facilitators, the participants and the staff at the residency and every ingredient had to be used.