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Art Forum Presents Diverse

January 2005
Art Forum Presents Diverse

On 10 December 2004, Kaya Collective, an Atlanta-based multi-media performance group, showcased a variety of���on the theme of "perspectives", at Octane Coffee Bar and Lounge. Techniques ranging from photography to dance were used to express a variety of perspectives on disaster ? both, natural and man-made.

The setting was a unique experience in "spatial" performance. The entire space at Octane was the "stage" and each person was just as much a part of that creative space and process. The audience could share their perspectives by writing on boards about the photographs depicting a flood in Bangladesh, a fire in California, and hurricanes in the Southeast. The pictures, wide and full with the stark devastation of disasters affecting nature and people, were masterfully taken by Sharmin Sadequee, Al Bruton, and Tyler Edgar.

A Polaroid camera station gave parti-cipants an opportunity to capture the

event and space instantly. These pictures were then clipped and displayed on an extending clothesline. During the evening, the photographers of the floods and fire were also called in from California and Michigan over speaker phone to share their experiences of the devastation and what motivated them to capture these images. Sonali Sadequee, Kaya Collective member and Raksha's Community Leadership Developer, said "Disasters from different parts of the world, to the untrained eye seem like natural disaster, but what I think this event highlighted is the way in which we contribute to these disasters and fail to acknowledge our responsibility to prevent them. Tonight's event was a powerful experience to come together as a community to creatively explore and honor these issues."

The event included spoken performances by Priyanka Sinha, Jyoti Hanagud, and Alka Roy; photographs by Raghu Rai; music by Rishi Patel and Aviva;

puppetry by Brandon, the puppet master; mime by Daniel Woods, and dance

by Sonali Sadequee and Jyoti Hanagud which was choreographed by Mrinalini Sharma. The dance, in the classical style of Kuchipudi, closed off the event

portraying the affects of disaster in the East, the responsibility of the West, and the healing of collective action.

The real-time photography projections as well as spoken and music presentations were marked by creativity, spontaneity, and visual abundance. A mix of community members and Kaya supporters, random coffee drinkers entranced by the bonus entertainment, and a growing Kaya Collective team, created a laid-back atmosphere connected to a spontaneous, but urgent call for accountability and collective responses to disasters.

Kaya Collective thanks Raksha, Octane, and community members for providing technical support.

Kaya Collective is a group of artists, activists, community organizers and creativity seekers transforming experiences into multi-media performance. More information available at


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