Goat, collage by Benode Behari Mukherjee, 1957. Mukherjee did much of his work while teaching at Santiniketan at Visva-Bharati. His impaired vision was congenital; he began to make collages at the age of 53 as his vision failed further.
Mission Statement, 2nd Symposium (8th and 9th January 2016): ‘Deprofessionalisation’
The subject of the symposium is ‘de-professionalisation’ – the urge, as a creative practitioner, or, indeed, a practitioner of any kind, not to be identified with one genre or activity, and to be, in general, a critic of specialisation and a champion of dabbling. The word ‘dabbling’ is being used here partly ironically, of course, but also full on, to convey the force of what a serious writer or thinker might achieve when they consciously diverge from the genre or practice they’re most identified with and even respected for. The idea and act of ‘de-professionalisation’ is really a critique of the construction of the writer, artist, or intellectual today – by publishers, by media, by festivals, by writers themselves. It also accommodates the notion of value: for instance, the idea that someone may not be ‘good’ at or trained in the skills of a particular project or genre or form they’ve embarked upon.