Sunday, June 10, 2012

The WALL Project

Art has always been an intrinsic part of India’s heritage, whether in galleries or on temple walls. But The WALL Project dreamed of taking art out of the galleries and into the public sphere; they saw public spaces, used by all classes of people as common ground, as the perfect place to start. Collaborating with students of Fine Arts, members of the community, even the BMC, they began the initiative to add colour, form and texture to their spaces.
  They began in Bandra, with its lanes, bridges, parks and houses. Tulsi Pipe road, ‘The Great Wall of Mumbai’ was their big project, bringing together 400 people of all ages and artistic ability. They found community supportive, energetic and enthusiastic – people of different backgrounds came together on one platform to brighten their city’s walls. 
 Bringing their own paints, brushes, buckets and tools, they were empowered to share the best of themselves. Creating public art in public spaces, “Colour to soothe your eyes and form to tease your mind and make you smile. It is a conversation with all who pass by.” Yahoo! was in conversation with members SHAZEB SHAIKH and NIYATI UPADHYA who’ve enjoyed watching the Project grow from humble roots in 2007-2008 to a movement that has taken on a life of its own.
  It’s now visibly active across 7 major states, and is mapped as a living museum of contemporary urban culture in the Lonely Planet guides to India. The WALL Project is now setting its sights on bigger things, hoping to create murals and other forms of public art into city landmarks. It’s clear there’s a new a new kid on the block in the archives of Indian heritage, and it’s on your city’s walls. Enjoy it, share it, be part of creating it.