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#HomemadeJoy is a Trimukhi Platform’s initiative coordinated by Jean-Frédéric Chevallier and Sukla Bar to weave relationships through the distance, from one home to another. During Covid-19 lockdown, from West Bengal (India), Trimukhi Platform has invited 37 artists and writers all over the World to collaborate on composing « Poetical Capsules » or Poetry Tracks and then Video-Poems. The dynamic is simple and concrete: invite a writer locked down somewhere, either in a city or in a village, to edit a poetical text; then work with actors and actrices also lockdown, in another country, another continent, on an accurate reading of the text; then send the recordings (in English, in French, in Bengali, in Arabic and/or Spanish) to a sound artist, also locked down at home, maybe in another continent, so for him or her to compose a sound piece. Make everybody interact sharing a diversity of ideas and suggestions. Finally, once ready, upload the track and enrich the Poetical Capsule series that you would discover by clicking on:
…Then…. taking the sound tracks you now have, do compose VideoPOETRY pieces. For that purpose, involve sculptors, painters, performers and/or video-photographers still locked down in Europe, Asia and/or North America as well as a white dove and a wild cloven-hoofed artiodactyl. Take as many images as required. Once a VideoPOEM is satisfactorily edited, upload it on your YouTube playlist and Instagram channel. You may also add it on Facebook. Then prepare yourself joyfully for the progressive end of the quarantine watching the videographic series on your smartphone by clicking on:
SINCE March 26, 2020, 37 artists and writers have been collaborating, locked down in Kolkata and Borotalpada village (India), Paris, Bordeaux, Strasbourg, Trappes, Mhères village and Lamativie village (France), Montreal, Dorval and Saint-Alphonse-Rodriguez village (Canada), New York and Boston (US), Mexico city, Valle de Bravo village and Guadalajara (Mexico), Rome (Italy), Rocallaura village (Spain) and Bruxelles (Belgium). The adventure ended on May 20 of the same year with the passage over Kolkata of quite a violent cyclone.
>> coordinator JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER
>> artistic directors JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER & SUKLA BAR
>> the texts are published in the fifth issue of FABRIQUE DE L’ART
POETRY TRACK 1
text & reading CHARLES BERNSTEIN / locked down in New York • sound design JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER / locked down in Kolkata
videoPOEM 1 with ABHIRUPA HALDAR / locked down in Kolkata
POETRY TRACK 2a
text & sound design JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER / locked down in Kolkata • reading in bengali SUKUL HANSDA / locked down in Borotalpada village • reading in french IKUE NAKAGAWA / locked down in Bruxelles • reading in english JOBA HANSDA / locked down in Borotalpada village • translation into bengali SUKLA BAR / locked down in Kolkata
videoPOEM 2a with JACQUES DI DONATO / locked down in Mhères village & GABRIELLE COUILLARD / locked down in Montreal & a WILD CLOVEN-HOOFED ARTIODACTYL / roaming around Borotalpada village
POETRY TRACK 2b
text & sound design JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER / locked down in Kolkata • reading in bengali SUROJMONI HANSDA & RAMJIT HANSDA / locked down in Borotalpada village • reading in french ÉMILIE LECONTE / locked down in Lamativie village & IKUE NAKAGAWA / locked down in Bruxelles • translation into bengali SUKLA BAR / locked down in Kolkata
POETRY TRACK 3
text JOSEPH DANAN / locked down in Paris • sound design ROGELIO SOSA / locked down in Mexico city • reading in french PHILIPPE OLLÉ-LAPRUNE / locked down in Mexico city • reading in English SHREYA MALLICK / locked down in Kolkata • translation into english JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER & ANJUM KATYAL / locked down in Kolkata
videoPOEM 3 with JOBA HANSDA / locked down in Borotalpada village
POETRY TRACK 4
text ÉMILIE LECONTE / locked down in Lamativie village • sound design & reading in french ANDRÉ ÉRIC LÉTOURNEAU / locked down in Montréal • with The sensor brothers / Studio La dent mystique • programming MICHEL DESROCHERS / locked down in Saint-Alphonse-Rodriguez village • reading in english SHAHNAZ PARVEEN / locked down in Kolkata • translation into english JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER & ANJUM KATYAL / locked down in Kolkata
POETRY TRACK 5
text & reading in english AMIT CHAUDHURI / locked down in Kolkata • sound design ANDRÉS SOLIS / locked down in Mexico city • reading in french > MATTHIEU MÉVEL / locked down in Rome • translation into french JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER / locked down in Kollkata // the tittle of the poem is “Shyamalda“
POETRY TRACK 6
text & co-reading in english AMIT CHAUDHURI / locked down in Kolkata • sound design ANDRÉS SOLIS / locked down in Mexico city • co-reading in english > CHARLES BERNSTEIN / locked down in New York • reading in french > MATTHIEU MÉVEL / locked down in Rome • translation into french JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER / locked down in Kollkata
videoPOEM 6 with RAMJIT HANSDA / locked down in Borotalpada village
POETRY TRACK 7
text & voice montage JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER / locked down in Kolkata • sound design ROGELIO SOSA / locked down in Mexico city • reading in bengali ABHIRUPA HALDAR / locked down in Kolkata & SUMITA BESRA / locked down in Borotalpada village • reading in french ÉMILIE LECONTE / locked down in Lamativie village • reading in english & translation into bengali SUKLA BAR / locked down in Kolkata
videoPOEM 7 with SUROJMONI HANSDA / locked down in Borotalpada village
POETRY TRACK 8
text & reading in arabic TARIK HAMDAN / locked down in Paris • sound design CHANTAL DUMAS / locked down in Montreal • translation & reading in english CHARLES BERNSTEIN / locked down in New York • reading in french PHILIPPE OLLÉ-LAPRUNE / locked down in Mexico city • translation into french ANTOINE JOCKEY / locked down in New York
videoPOEM 8 with SUKUL HANSDA / locked down in Borotalpada village & SWASTIKA MUKHERJEE / locked down in Kolkata & IKUE NAKAGAWA / locked down in Bruxelles & SANDRA MILENA GOMEZ / locked down in Mexico city
POETRY TRACK 9
text LUIS VICENTE DE AGUINAGA / locked down in Guadalajara • sound design & reading in french MARIO GAUTHIER / locked down in Dorval • reading in spanish YAZEL PARRA NAHMENS / locked down in Rocallaura village • reading in english ABHIRUPA HALDAR / locked down in Kolkata • translation into french JEAN-LUC LACARRIÈRE / locked down in Mexico city • translation into english JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER / locked down in Kolkata
videoPOEM 9 with NICOLAS SANHES / locked down in Trappes
POETRY TRACK 10
text & voice composition JEAN-FRÉDÉRIC CHEVALLIER / locked down in Kolkata • electronic music PHILIPPE MANOURY / locked down in Strasbourg • technical support GABRIELLE COUILLARD / locked down in Montreal • reading in french PIERRE KATUSZEWSKI/ locked down in Bordeaux & ÉMILIE LECONTE / locked down in Lamativie village & MAÏA NICOLAS / locked down in Boston & MATTHIEU MÉVEL / locked down in Rome • reading in Spanish YAZEL PARRA NAHMENS / locked down in Rocallaura • artistic collaboration SUKLA BAR / locked down in Kolkata // the tittle of the musical piece is “Study III for Skala“
videoPOEM 10 with KOYEL KARMAKAR & SHREYA MALLICK / locked down in Kolkata & a WHITE DOVE / flying in the city sky
WHO DURING LOCKDOWN
The poet Charles Bernstein (70) is practicing “physical distance and social intimacy” from Brooklyn, unpacking his library, spending too much times reading the newspapers, disappointed not able to enjoy the suddenly clear, clean air because he can’t go outside. This too may pass but he feels he may pass with it.
Abhirupa Haldar (28), postgraduate in English literature from Jadavpur University, Calcutta, still maintains a daily routine amid the pandemic isolation. The days are reserved for intellectual stimulations, through reading and writing. Evenings are for sensory stimulations received through playing or listening to music and watching cinema.
Palestinian Tarik Hamdan (35) is busy working…at work. Journalist presenter for the Arabic broadcasted radio Monte Carlo Doualiya in Paris, he also writes poetry during his spare time and sometimes makes a book: the latest is Rire et gêmissement, published in Arabic-French bilingual version in 2018 in Plaine page editions.
Since Emilie Leconte (42) is locked down between four walls, she notices having done three things that she had never done before: playing poker, making hula hoop and cooking rum cakes. She nevertheless continues to devote herself to writing. Her next play, about the Berlin Wall, will be published in September. She can’t help but notice that, this year, the walls may have taken up too much space in her life.
Matthieu Mével (48) is having, during confinement, a daily ritual: 3 glasses of wine, starting with the first sip at 7 pm sharp. Teacher of theatre acting at French Institut in Rome, he is a writer. The release of his next novel, published by Gallimard, will happen once it becomes possible again to run in the open.
The daily IT professional routine of Shahnaz Parveen (27), running to office at an early hour and reaching home late with staggering legs has taken a halt in the lockdown. She has found new joy of working from home while sneaking glances at traditional Bengali recipes online and relishing the preparations. But most of all, ideas come rushing in her mind as she sits for painting. With her cats as her silent audience, she is filling quarantine canvases after quarantine canvases and sharing them through instagram together with those of many others.
Philippe Ollé-Laprune (58) is a publisher, a cultural coordinator and a writer who just arrived in Mexico 25 years ago. Locked down in the south part of Mexico City, he developed the theory that Covid-19 can be soluble in Mezcal liquor and talks about it every evening with his two dogs. They don’t respond yet. Reading daily a chapter of Don Quixote he hopes to finish the book before July 2020 ends.
Contemporary music composer Philippe Manoury (68), locked down in Strasbourg in north-est of France, continues to compose as when there is no lockdown.
Contemporary writer and classical singer Amit Chaudhuri (58), locked down in Calcutta, in eastern India, continues to write and practise Hindustani classical singing as if there were no lockdown. That’s what his life is like in ‘normal’ times.
Luis Vicente de Aguinaga (48) is locked down in his birth place Guadalajara. Instead of supporting a first division football team, it supports two of second division, which is doubly sad. Currently he has trouble putting order in his rather curly hair. Poet, phD owner form University of Montpellier and professor at home, he is the author of some twenty books straddling poetry and literary experiments. He has seen most of his rock idols die, so he feels ready for the end of the world.
Andrés Solís (48), sound artist, is in confinement in Mexico City. He has assumed the quarantine as a unique opportunity that enables to focus all the energy in working creatively, meditate, practice and train full time without the distractions of usual everyday life.
Locked down in Calcutta and rather happy about it (at least before the heat hits the city), Jean-Frédéric Chevallier (47) did not suspect, by launching the Poetry Tracks series on a breezy March evening, that the dynamic would be so colourfully multiple. He is co-founder of Trimukhi Platform and theatre director (mainly), video artist (very often) and philosopher (too intermittently for his taste).
Joseph Danan (68) began to mutate at the beginning of Paris lockdown, going from the status of prolific theatre writer and newly retired university professor to that of primary school teacher for his son, class 2 student, learning like everyone else to blowing your elbow but refusing to wear a mask when it is not essential, a modest sign of civil disobedience intended to preserve a share of humanity in social “distancing”.
From the second floor of a window apartment building, Chantal Dumas (61) observes Montreal social distancing. In the afternoon on sunny days or at night, she takes to the streets where life goes by slowly. She listens to the sound of human activity spreading sparingly in public space: the passage of an airplane, a ball hitting the ground that a child dribbles before rushing towards the basket, birds song in full frenzy of making a nest and, a voice on the phone. Listening to solidarity given to lonely lives.
At the beginning of the lockdown, Sukul Hansda (22), sound and performing artist member of the creative team of Trimukhi Platform, has been the first in the tribal village of Borotalpada (West Bengal, India) to refuse asbestos, not at all eco-friendly. The roof of the family house that he is reconstructing is therefore not carcinogenic.
Mario Gauthier (62) lives in Dorval, Quebec, Canada. Independent researcher, lecturer at Quebec University in Montreal and a sound artist, he tends to confine himself, even without confinement. He listens to a lot of staff (music, sounds, etc.), reads or rereads the bunch of books he has accumulated over the years, watches films and re-mixes a lot of old things related to sound. He finds very fortunate that spring is finally here.
Born in Bogotá and grew up in Cartagena, choreographer Sandra Milena Gómez (42) dances with the plants while watching the birds perching on them and dancing too. She performed choreographies with the house furniture, meditates to remove the inevitable anxiety that teaching dance through a computer screen causes and smiles to the sunsets that she sees through the window of her home in Mexico city.
For Surojmoni Hansda (18), actress and member of Trimukhi Platform creative team, confinement brings joy and pain at the same time. Joys because suddenly, she no longer has to go anywhere and it is very relaxing. Sorrows too because she had planed to enjoy the amenities that government boarding school offers to class 12 students (bed with mattress, sunny room, separate shower, etc.). Instead of that relative luxury, she finds herself cooking 3 times a day for the whole family in Borotalpada village, cleaning the house and taking care of her 2 brothers’ laundry.
Yazel Parra Nahmens (33) is an artist and researcher of scenic things, Venezuelan based in Rocallaura, a village in Catalonia, Spain. In other words: the appropriate place where to be locked down, trying combinations of theatrical actions that call for slowness – a slowness which, in “normal” time, is like a dead thing: absent from Yazel’s daily life.
André Éric Létourneau (52), professor at the University of Quebec in Montreal, intermedia artist or (he says) “super-disciplinary” one divides his confinement into two main periods: dismantling piece by piece his recording studio for a complete cleaning; immersion in the writing of his PhD thesis – the almost telescoping of the two activities sometimes leads to convoluted phrases such as: “I” believe, in a transductive perspective, in sharing and decentralising, in sono-temporal architectures, in drifts, deconstructions, reconstructions as infinite hybridisations.
Swastika Mukherjee (35), visual artist, is watching at another side of the confinement. Not only human who can live, other creatures too belong to the mother earth. Watching the nest next to the window in evening became a daily ritual for her. The noisy road never allowed that tree to know this new beginning ever before. The leaves of the tree was always dull. Now like every happy leaf of the tree chimes with her heart.
Since Koyel Karmakar (38) is, on the one hand, an optimistic person and, on the other hand, a home loving, present lockdown is not bothering her much. Her family has even started helping with creative gardening and she has successfully trimmed the hair of her husband and son. As the later is about to face his secondary board exam, she often get busy boosting his confidence. But sometimes at night depression haunts her, which remains confined in her daily diary.
Gabrielle Couillard (27), confined in her too small Montreal apartment, misses the world of live-show, even more now that her paper puppets are in a burnout. Meanwhile, she feed her muses wine, books, promises of crazy adventures (and really, anything) hoping to write new fragments to transform into soundscape within the too tight walls of her 2 bedrooms flat, and she would like to reminds her neighbours that she cannot do much about the sound of her dishwasher (but it creates wonderful samples to use and transform).
Rogelio Sosa (43) currently exiled from Mexico City and locked down close to the forest in Valle de Bravo. He is always very active in the fields of experimental music and sound art but now he is trying to taka a pause and be as less productive as possible (but Jean-Frédéric Chevalier is not helping with that). He is having a good time with his two daughters: Kira and Silvestre.
Co-founder of Trimukhi Platform and #HomemadeJoy producer, Sukla Bar (46) thought that Calcutta lockdown would be the occasion to begin concreting some of the dreams she had. But the dreams remain dreams, and the reality reality, due to lack of time. She feels immensely lively when preparing, naked handed, soil for seedlings on the terrace garden. Her inner “homemade joy” consists in discovering new ways of combining plants, handy-craft furnitures, statues, paintings, photographs, sculptures, piles of books, tree trunks, bamboo sections, stones from mountains and seas which inhabit the house.
University professor, Pierre Katuszewski (47) didn’t cook elaborate dishes, neither stitched homemade masks, nor sang in front of his webcam. If the changing skies of the sleeping beauty (the nickname of the city of Bordeaux where he is confined) punctuate his days, he is anxious to be able to soak up again the Aquitaine rain and then dry under its strong sun. In the meantime, he is preparing to defend, masked or uncovered, his habilitation to supervise PhD researchers.
Dancer and choreographer, Ikue Nakagawa (40) lives in Bruxelles. She spends her confined days drawing, cooking (lunch), playing Uno with her children, cooking (dinner), playing Uno with her children, having an aperitif drink, playing Uno with her children, eating, playing Uno with her children. Which gives her : 1.) to rediscover how much her son and daughter are marvellous kids; 2.) to find new pleasure in following, step by step, recipes that need hours to get ready. Sometimes it gives her also terrible head-hacks.
Jacques Di Donato (77), musician, lives in Mhère, a small village in Burgundy, France. Retired and president of Bords de Mhère – a not-for-profit society dedicated to contemporary art creation. From there, confinement seems far away and related to some civic disobedience acts to perform in order to reach places intended for food… Daily life in the countryside is rather divided between music, reading, films, gardening attempts and above all moved by the need to find a rhythm of life inhabited by a care for the immediate and future environment.
Indian scholars comfortably settled in London were moved by it: the poorest in India suffer excruciatingly from lockdown. The statement is relevant for many of the subcontinent cities but it is not always so for the countryside, where 2/3 of the population reside… For Dhananjoy Hansda (22), photographer, videographer, member of Trimukhi Platform committee and son of one of the 5 morols (village leaders in santhali) of Borotalpada village, lockdown has become a wonderful moment: as all the villagers are present and money is a canceled topic, everyone can take time to help his or her neighbours, one after the other, to enlarge or rebuild their house. This reactivation of an ancestral practice of the Santhal communities, that of the exchange of work days family-to-family, makes him deeply happy.
Ramjit Hansda (17), contemporary dancer and member of Trimukhi Platform committee, is in the same case. The village lockdown, he notes on WhatsApp, is an opportunity for intense work together accompanied, adds this big eater whose bone growth recently finishes, of an almost overdose of food given the amount of foodstuffs delivered regularly to tribal villagers by local government.
For Joba Hansda (18), actress and dancer, member of Trimukhi Platform committee, the last phase of confinement is like a sort of rural prelude to deconfinement as it gives her the opportunity to go and plant trees on the edge of Borotalpada tribal village where she was born. A measure taken by West Bengal government to alleviate a little the dramatic deforestation of the region.
Maïa Nicolas (45), a dancer who has become secretive since exiled in Boston, US, takes advantage of confinement to further confine her secret. She records several poetical capsules readings from the closet of her living room and tries to attend a maximum intimacy with the sound-recorder, going so far as to almost kissing it constantly while whispering the words in a soft and clear voice… splitting the membrane of the machine… to the dismay of the sound artists who then work with recordings that seem to have been taken in the middle of a cyclone.
One realises it by carefully scrutinising the shootings that Shreya Mallick (29) made for the 10th video-poem: the dark rings under her eyes are expanding during confinement. Is it due to the overload of home work required by the advertising agency which employs her? Or is it a consequence of being employed for such a job despite having graduated from an art school? Still, although over-exploited by capitalism, Shreya discovers, thanks to confinement, something important: the pleasure of immersing herself into books.