Colomboscope together with the Geoffrey Bawa Trust and Kälam supported by EU National Institutes for Culture launch a two part residential workshop initiative. Scheduled to take place in June and September 2023.
The Forest School invites local visual artists and contemporary cultural practitioners across a range of disciplines to participate in an open and horizontal learning process including skill building, practical exercises led by artist mentors, group reading, spatial design and architecture. The overarching concerns will focus on communal processes of exchange around the forest as a site of interdependent ecologies, multispecies coexistence, indigenous knowledge and aural histories. Through volatile challenges in the island once again, this workshop endeavours to provide a space for resource exchange, refuge, and sustenance.
All Right Angles: Residential Workshop for emerging cultural practitioners II
September 23 - 26, 2023 (Lunuganga, Bentota)
This residential workshop, uses the garden as a lens for engagement with architecture, art, and ecology. A range of local and international facilitators will take 11 participants, selected through an open call, through sessions on building a speculative counter-archive with Setareh Noorani (Netherlands), experiencing the garden through an ecological lens with Prof. Sarath Kotagama (Sri Lanka), and uncovering bodies as repositories of knowledge with Umeshi Rajeendra (Sri Lanka). Guided sessions will be interspersed with boat excursions to the Honduwa island for sightings of Hog Deer at dawn, opening up acts of active reading and exchange with Colomboscope in the “To Lunuganga” reading room, star gazing and a special film screening of 'Bawa's Garden' (2022). Hailing from Jaffna, Monaragala, Badulla, Batticaloa, Aluthgama and Colombo, the cohort consists of emerging architecture students, architects, artists and designers.
Sri Lanka’s ethnically and socially diverse communities are massively affected by the ongoing political and economic crises. This project takes account of these realities while broadening the possibilities of creating safe spaces for artistic expression, horizontal cultural education and inspiring youth focused dialogues with EU based creative experts and producers through distinctive models that combine workshops with residency models and open studios.
The themes draw upon the forest as a site of pluralistic ecologies of regeneration, multispecies coexistence, indigenous knowledge and post-war sustainability. In referencing the forest as a sensory architecture that is a world in itself (Ursula K. Le Guin), elements of social and environmental justice become entwined. The earliest sites of learning too have been in these dense grounds and so too have legacies of violence. Given the cultural relations’ experience of all partners involved, this will propel innovative working environments and daring imagination. Located in two different provinces, the sites for the workshops will develop into spaces for new forms of mutual learning, for professionalization and upskilling of the participants.
Creative Island – From Forest School to Sensory Architectures is a project by EUNIC Sri Lanka,. Colomboscope, the Geoffrey Bawa Trust and Kälam (Jaffna). EUNIC — European Union National Institutes for Culture — is Europe’s network of national cultural institutes and organizations, with 36 members from all EU member states and associated countries. EUNIC Sri Lanka - consisting of the Alliance Française, the Goethe-Institut, the British Council, the Italian Embassy, and the Dutch Embassy - adopts an integrated approach to building cultural relations and creative collaborations and supporting diversity.