Third edition of Dhaka Art Summit

Third edition of Dhaka Art Summit

Dhaka Art Summit

Ayesha Sultana, Untitled, 2014. Image courtesy of Experimenter Kolkata.

October 31, 2014

Dhaka Art Summit
5–7 February 2016

Samdani Art Foundation
Level 5, Suite 501 & 502
Shanta Western Tower
186 Gulshan- Tejgaon Road
Tejgaon 1/A, Dhaka -1208

The Samdani Art Foundation announces the third edition of the Dhaka Art Summit from February 5 to 7, 2016, a pioneering research and exhibition platform for South Asian art that brings together artists, curators, museums, scholars, and visitors from across Bangladesh and the world to discover institutional-quality works in a non-commercial environment. The 2014 edition welcomed over 70,000 visitors over three days and registered as one of the most important events in the South Asia region. Projects from the 2014 Dhaka Art Summit have since traveled to the Berlin Biennale, the Queens Museum, NYU Abu Dhabi, Kochi-Muziris Biennale, and the Kunsthalle Basel.

Building on the Summit’s identity as a research platform, the third edition will include a non-commercial Rewind section, highlighting practices of South Asian artists active before 1980. This section will replace the galleries segment of the prior editions. The Samdani Art Foundation is also partnering with Asia Art Archive (AAA): the Summit will include a booth that will share materials to support the development of scholarship on recent art from Bangladesh, and present the first stage of a planned bibliography of Bengali language writing on art. The Summit will also feature a new section of Critical Writing Ensembles developed in collaboration with Office for Contemporary Art Norway (OCA), which will provide a platform to explore forms of experimental writing in South Asia. Book-making will also be a feature of the Summit in collaboration with BOOK MACHINE powered by onestar press.

Following the critical acclaim of the 2014 program, the Samdani Art Foundation is pleased to welcome the 2016 Artistic Team appointed by the foundation’s Artistic Director, Diana Campbell Betancourt, who will again curate the solo projects and public art project and the talks programme. Nada Raza will pose an inter-generational conversation between artistic responses to the limits, potential, and elasticity of language. Fort William College, the Progressive Writers Movement, and the possibility of a visual espertanto informs her work. Shanay Jhaveri will curate a film programme that will engage ideas about location and cross-cultural experience. A documentary by Merchant Ivory on the writer Nirad Chaudhari will form the cornerstone for the programme. Nikhil Chopra and Madhavi Gore will curate the performance programme and conduct educational workshops with Bangladeshi performance artists along with artist Jana Prepeluh, and Aurelien Lemonier will curate an exhibition on Bangladeshi architecture as part of a wider research project for the Centre Pompidou. The Summit will also include an exhibition of Bangladeshi art curated by Mohammad Muniruzzaman. The exhibition is produced by Mohammad Wahiduzzaman (Operations Director, Samdani Art Foundation) and Eve Lemesle (Associate Producer, Samdani Art Foundation and Founder of What About Art?).

The Samdani Art Foundation has again partnered with the Delfina Foundation to award an outstanding young Bangladeshi artist the opprtunity to attend a three-month residency at the Delfina Foundation in London as part of the bi-annual Samdani Art Award. Ten finalists will be selected from an open call for applications, and their work will be exhibited in a show curated by Daniel Baumann (Director, Kunsthalle Zurich) in collaboration with ProHelvetia-Swiss Arts Council. Baumann will be assisted by Bangladeshi curators who he will mentor. The jury panel for the award is comprised of Caroline Bourgeois (Curator, Pinault Collection), Cosmin Costinas (Director, Para/Site), Catherine David (Deputy Director, Centre Pompidou), Massimiliano Gioni (Artistic Director, New Museum), and chaired by Aaron Cezar (Director, Delfina Foundation).  

More information can be found at and

Biographical information on the Artistic Team
Diana Campbell Betancourt is an American curator based in Mumbai and working across South Asia. She is the Artistic Director of the Samdani Art Foundation in Dhaka and the Chief Curator of the Dhaka Art Summit for the 2014 and 2016 editions. Betancourt’s research interests lie in rethinking cross-cultural encounters in public space, and rethinking what public space might mean. In addition to running the Foundation’s exhibitions and international exchange programs, she is building the Samdani Art Foundation collection ahead of the opening of a permanent space in Sylhet, Bangladesh. Betancourt has collaborated with sculpture parks around the world contributing to new commissions of Indian art at institutions including Yorkshire Sculpture Park, deCordova Sculpture Park, and Wånas Konst. Betancourt co-curated Energy Plus, the Mumbai City Pavilion for the 9th Shanghai Biennale, and is a curatorial advisor for the upcoming 2015 New Museum Triennial in New York.

Nikhil Chopra‘s artistic practice ranges between live art, theatre, painting, photography, sculpture and installations. Chopra was born in Calcutta in 1974, and currently lives in Goa. After studying at the Faculty of Fine Arts at Maharaja Sayaji Rao University in Baroda, India, Chopra continued his studies in the USA, where he had his first solo exhibition, Sir Raja II, in 2003. Chopra’s performances on the international art scene began in 2008 on the back of a series of performances titled Yog Raj Chitrakar: Memory Drawing Series that first opened at Chatterjee & Lal, Mumbai, and he has since exhibited at institutions such as the Yokohama Triennale, the New Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, among others. 
Madhavi Gore is a visual artist whose interdisciplinary art practice engages performance, painting and drawing, craft and pedagogy. After university in the United States, Madhavi worked in Mumbai as an art writer with Art India Magazine, and went on to organize and facilitate studio-art workshops on new practices and critical thought for college-level students. Currently based in Goa, she collectively runs an international artist residency space called The Heritage Hotel. The space is scheduled to have its first opening event in October 2014. Recently she has been collaborating with artists Jana Prepeluh, and her partner Nikhil Chopra, on “bodyworkshop,” a studio-art workshop focused on exploring transformation through the practice of performance.
Shanay Jhaveri is a curator and writer based in London and Mumbai. He has curated film programmes at the Tate Modern, Iniva, LUX/ICA Biennial of Moving Images, and the exhibition Companionable Silences at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris. He is the editor of Outsider Films on India: 1950–1990 (The Shoestring Publisher, 2010) and Western Artists and India: Creative Inspirations in Art and Design (Thames and Hudson, 2013). He is a contributing editor to Frieze magazine, and is currently a PhD candidate at the Royal College of Art, London. 

Aurélien Lemonier is an architect and a curator in the department of Architecture of the Centre Pompidou in Paris. In the past ten years that he has been affiliated with the Centre Pompidou, he has curated extensive exhibitions on Robert-Mallet-Stevens, Dutch avante-garde architecture, the history of the modern museum in France, Jean Prouvé, Bernard Tschumi, and most recently a Frank Gehry retrospective. Lemonier has been researching post-Independence South Asian architecture for the past three years and expanded the collection of architectural drawings at the Centre Pompidou to include the Middle East and South Asian holdings. 

Nada Raza is an Assistant Curator at the Tate Modern who focuses her research mainly on Modern and Contemporary Art from South Asia. Raza was born in Karachi and completed an MA in Curatorial Studies from the Chelsea College of Arts and previously worked with Iniva and Green Cardamom in London. Raza was Guest Curator for The Abraaj Group Art Prize 2014 which included artists from the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia. Other recent exhibition projects include Meschac Gaba: Museum of Contemporary African Art (Tate 2013, Deutsche Bank KunstHalle 2014); Lines of Control (Herbert F. Johnson Museum, Cornell University 2012), and Social Fabric (Iniva, 2012).
About the Samdani Art Foundation
The Samdani Art Foundation is a private foundation based in Dhaka that aims to increase artistic engagement between Bangladesh and the rest of the world. Founded in 2011 by collector couple Nadia and Rajeeb Samdani (Co-Chair of Tate South Asia Acquisitions Committee, New Museum International Leadership Council Members), the foundation has enabled Bangladeshi artists to expand their creative horizons through production grants, residencies, education programs, and exhibitions. The Foundation produces the bi-annual Dhaka Art Summit, which is the world’s largest non-commercial platform for South Asian Art. The Foundation also collects art from all over the world, and the collection is available for Bangladeshi audiences to view (by appointment). Works from Documenta, the Venice Biennale, and Liverpool Biennale have a permanent home in Bangladesh, and the foundation also lends its collection of South Asian art to global exhibitions. The Foundation is led by Diana Campbell Betancourt and an advisory team comprised of Massimiliano Gioni, Monica Narula, Beatrix Ruf, and Shahzia Sikander.

Please contact info [​at​] for more information.

Samdani Art Foundation announces third edition of Dhaka Art Summit
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