The Young Creators Safe Space program provided eight young upcoming creators an opportunity to be mentored by renowned artists. The programme comprised six workshops across the first three months by mentors followed by three months of production and community engagement.
During the program, the YCSS participants presented their learnings, process of creation and community engagement they worked on over the past few months.
While one of the projects was themed around gender disparity and stereotypes, the other was a retrospective of the pandemic and related challenges recorded through the lens of blue-collar workers. It was very rewarding to finally see the results of their efforts.
The program included presentations, certificate and reference letter presentations, games and a reflection circle. The YCSS participants were joined by joined by Manasi Prasad, Director, Roshni Rao, Head of Arts British Council (South India), YCSS mentors (Bruce Lee Mani, Madhu Natraj, K.M. Chaitanya, Nisha Abdulla, Indira Chandrasekhar and Pallavi Chander), Tejshvi Jain and Lakshmi R from IME.
Team 1 comprised four young artists – Sahana Srikanth, Shashwati Kashyap, Heamshree Yogesha and Poorvi Nahar – who work across the disciplines of Visual Art, Classical Indian Dance and Classical Indian Music.
They produced a news zine, Pandemic Times, about the life and times in the pandemic through the lens of blue collar workers.
They conducted interviews with the everyday people whose invisible labour supports our lives. They also researched the effects of the pandemic on marginalised communities including women.
The news zine used different ways (interviews, articles, horoscope, word games and comics) of conveying information in a traditional newspaper, to present different perspectives on the pandemic.
Team 2 comprised four young artists – Aanchal Bordoloi, Ananya Ananth Rao, Apeksha Kamath and Saibrindha Ramachandran – who work across the disciplines of Western Music, Classical Indian Music and Classical Indian Dance.
Two of the artists from the team co-wrote, composed and recorded a song titled Unencumbered. The lyrics for the song were inspired by responses to an online survey of 30 young adults on gender disparity and stereotypes.
Two of the artists trained in classical Indian dance visited an orphanage to create awareness and sensitise children on issues pertaining to gender disparity and stereotypes.
The 90-minute workshop was attended by 25 children of the age group 11-17 years of age. Children were shown advertisements entrenched in gender stereotypes, that’s subliminal messaging and role in social conditioning building propagate stereotypes.
Children opened up to the session with questions and sharing their experiences. The facilitators wrapped up the session with a mini talent show that encouraged children to showcase their talent. There was dance, music, and beatboxing!