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A Kolkata

“A Kolkata” is a video artwork by artist Alex May realised within the framework of the Indo-European Residency Project Kolkata 2021 supported by EUNIC – European Union National Institutes for Culture in collaboration with the British Council, Kolkata.

The video is available to view online from 10th December 2021 to 31st January 2022 – https://ieresidencykolkata.com/exhibition2021

The work is a reflection on the experience and role of travel from the perspective of being locked down due to the pandemic.  If we are to curb our travel to reduce our carbon impact on the world, do we need to redefine our idea of having visited a place being entirely a physical act.

Due to the pandemic, the entire residency took place online, with one selected artist from France, Germany, Italy, India, and the UK exploring the city of Kolkata virtually via a curated collection of materials and online events.

During the residency, Alex collaborated with four Kolkata based photographers to capture physical elements of Kolkata as 3d models.  Following a workshop that introduced the technique, each photographer was asked to go out and select objects that act as personal markers for how they navigate the city.  By taking a number of 2d photographs of each object from different angles, Alex was then able to recreate these objects in 3d using photogrammetry software.

These disparate objects were then digitally combined into a visual poem that reflects on what it means to have been to a place.  Partially inspired by an intense lucid dream of walking through Kolkata that Alex had during the residency, the work is a deeply personal exploration of the idea of a city never visited.

Video and soundtrack by Alex May

Made in collaboration with

Neel Bhattacharjee
Bappaditya Dasgupta
Ritaban Ghosh
Rohan Mukherjee

Format: MP4/H264 video 1920×1080
Duration: 6m 36s

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