Mumbai’s streets are as vibrant, chaotic and busy as the people that reside here. Teeming with vehicles, pedestrians, hawkers and shops, these potholed pathways bustle with activity, tirelessly, unendingly. The NSPA adds one more component to this lively mix – Street Performances. Performing on the streets, or busking, has been around for generations as the streets make for excellent performance arenas. Not only do they offer lots of exposure to artists, they also help bring art to the public.
The NSPA strives to infuse Mumbai’s streets with enriching and spirited performances by encouraging independent artists to perform at public venues like promenades, parks, railway stations, malls, etc. Eager to be a part of this program? Well, all you need to do is stop by and give us a listen! Our artists perform frequently at Carter Road, Pushpa Narsee Park, Sai Baba Park and in Metro Stations. So, if you happen to be in the area, gather round our artists and enjoy their soothing, melodious performances.
NSPA hope to contribute towards a larger Art consciousness in society, fostering a greater societal ownership and educated appreciation of our Arts heritage and diversity and the larger Artist community. In line with this idea is NSPA’s Art Literacy Mission. The program currently consists of three primary interventions with its scope limited to children up to the age of 16 years across public and private schools and city neighbourhoods. The basic methodology comprises the use of interactive and experiential techniques to impart Art education complementary with the prevalent school curriculum.
The interventions range from distribution of simple, portable and economical instruments sourced from local artisans to students already undergoing some sort of musical training, interactive performances by independent Artists to more in-depth workshops where Artists initiate their audiences to the context and contours of their Art form and practice. Each artist through his/her experience of teaching young children engages them in a conversation through which diverse Art forms are taught, performed and an appreciation of Art gradually created and nurtured.
NSPA’s Community Art Programme is a collaborative Art enterprise with the objective of enhancing community-based engagement, expression and representation. Such engagement is centered in the neighbourhood common/public spaces which facilitate a site of unrestricted, open interaction and dissemination of renewed social norms. The programme was piloted in the summer of 2014 in a neighbourhood in the Western Suburbs of Mumbai taking the form of a collaborative Community Arts Camp. The camp held over a fortnight was curated to be an entirely indigenous project roping in residents, enterprises and local associations of the community to organise, conduct, contribute and participate in the Camp. Events were designed to cater to all age groups and facilitate wholesome interaction across social divisions. The consequent familiarities engendered in the neighbourhood then pave the way for deeper Art engagements.
Modern cities today increasingly witness limited social interaction and mobility of individuals beyond their primary vicinities of inhabitation and workspace, owing to limited leisure time and stratification of spaces along socio-economic lines. Consequently, most local Arts and Cultural expression occur within the limited social spaces of these segregations. NSPA seeks to engender such Art-based engagement programmes within urban neighbourhoods that will foster a Culture of Commons triggering an inclusivist discourse in the community. Centering such engagement at the neighbourhood common spaces will facilitate a site of open interaction and dissemination of renewed social norms. Community Art refers to Art of, by and for the Community enhancing community-based collaboration, expression and representation. Thus, we hope to work towards the building of an eclectic social fabric based on the celebration of diversity, the commons, artistic traditions- both local and migrant, oral histories, Arts-based learning and interactions.
Nothing like performing in front of a large, appreciative and euphoric audience, right? The NSPA helps propel independent artists into the limelight by setting up performances at popular cultural festivals, concerts and award ceremonies. In the past, NSPA artists have performed at Indikaleido, AmeriCares India Foundation’s ‘Spirit of Humanity Awards,’ Kala Ghoda Arts Festival as well as in several cafes that dot the city. This helps our artists gain the exposure they require as well as expose people to talented and harmonious live performances. Our artists light up the stage with their captivating compositions and well-rehearsed acts. If you happen to attend an event our artists are performing at, hang around to witness firsthand their scintillating, flawless performances.
Talent can run through one’s veins, but for it to result in greatness, it needs to be nurtured and honed. After all, it’s the hands of an experienced potter that transform lumps of clay into beautiful pots. We at the NSPA understand this and hence, do our best to sharpen and refine the talents of our gifted artists. After gauging their abilities, we pinpoint areas that need to be worked upon and then rope in professional instructors to train and guide them. By availing of this training, our artists are slowly, but surely, transformed into serious, seasoned professionals who strive to deliver the best, and only the best, every time.
We are always on the lookout for professionals who are willing to share their knowledge with upcoming artists. If you feel generous enough to help out artists in need, do share with us your details so that we can contact you when your expertise is required.
Don’t forget the old adage, “Knowledge shared is knowledge gained!”
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