measure | decipher: A Conversation

20 November 2015 


In his essay, DECIPHERING-The Sense Of Distance We Adopt Towards Our Everyday Living, Kaiwan Mehta writes, "The urban is evidently present in the work of Pratap Morey; but also in a certain way his works try to escape the urban, and literally produce fantasy landscapes where the urban is mere picture-play or it is the miniaturised detail making the urban landscape into a fantasy object...Morey's landscapes on another level are like the child's playground - planned and ordered, cut into shapes and sizes, with a few images from the 'real' world added in to excite the child's play. A playground or a game board - these landscapes appear not permanent but only temporarily frozen, only to metamorphose into some other landscape diagram soon."

Tying in their individual practices, the panelists will examine the ways in which a city takes shape, not just as a place but an entity of monumental imaginations, the stuff of everyday life, and an ecosystem that contributes to a sense of our own identity. The discussion will be moderated by gallery director, Hena Kapadia.


About the panellists

Kaiwan Mehta has studied Architecture, Literature, Indian Aesthetics and Cultural Studies. He is a theorist and critic in the fields of visual culture, architecture and city studies. He authored Alice in Bhuleshwar: Navigating a Mumbai Neighbourhood (Yoda Press. New Delhi, 2009). Since March 2012 he has been the Managing Editor of Domus India and is associated with Jnanapravaha (Mumbai) and set up, as founder-course director, the Art, Criticism and Theory programmes. He was also the founder-director of Arbour Research Initiatives in Architecture and is the Executive Committee member with INTACH (Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage) - Mumbai chapter.

Sampurna Chattarji is a poet, novelist, translator and children’s author. Her fourteen books include the novels Rupture and Land of the Well (both from HarperCollins); the poetry books Absent Muses (Poetrywala, 2010) and The Fried Frog (Scholastic 2009); as well as her collection of short stories about Bombay/Mumbai, Dirty Love (Penguin 2013). Her translation of the Selected Poems of Joy Goswami (Harper Perennial, 2014) was shortlisted for the inaugural Khushwant Singh Memorial Prize for Poetry. Sampurna was the 2012 Charles Wallace writer-in-residence at the University of Kent, Canterbury. The book she wrote during the residency, Space Gulliver: Chronicles of an Alien (HarperCollins, 2015) is just out.

In October 2014 and April 2015 Sampurna was part of Walking Cities, an India-Wales poetry project in which participating poets shared lived and literary versions of their home-cities with each other, creating new work and performing together in Mumbai, Kolkata, Swansea, Cardiff, Laugharne and London.