Brihatta Art Foundation

Residency brief

The Brihatta Art Foundation is founded by Artist Bishwajit Goswami, a professor in the Department of Drawing and Painting at Dhaka University's Faculty of Fine Arts, and Nusrat Mahmud, co-founder of Bureau 555, a digital transformation agency based in Dhaka and London. The foundation is a research-based artist run art platform with an aim to extend the accessibility and visibility of art through community engagement and development.

Brihatta means “immensity” in Bangla and is focused on the creation, and curation of art within the public realm, It is a dynamic liaison between artists, craftsmen, local and expat community members, and global practitioners to place artwork within a space that achieves shared goals.

This goes through organizing workshops, residencies, and art talks. They have showcased Bangladeshi art locally and internationally, on global platforms like Dhaka Art Summit and Paris Internationale.

In 2023, Brihatta launched an ongoing, internal research program at its art space with Artists and Artisans. Through this program, it aims to explore the key connections between art and craft; the artist with his intellectual process, versus the artisan with his manual work. How can we nurture creativity while keeping the sustainability of communities in mind? Who does authorship belong to in a collaboration like this? How can an object gain new cultural context through exchange?

In that regard, the Foundation is looking to host an artist who is interested in re-discovering traditional Bangladeshi crafts techniques, experiment with sustainable materials and found objects, keeping in line with its ethos of creating from nature and surrounding elements.

  • Thematic focus Arts & Crafts, with a focus on Visual Arts, Sustainability and, Community-based work.
  • Location Hazaribagh, Dhaka (Bangladesh)
  • Dates September 2024 - March 2025
  • Length of stay 1 to 3 months

Location

Hazaribagh, Dhaka (Bangladesh). Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, is home to almost 20 million people and is at the heart of a constant artistic ferment. Artists from all over the country come together to create, experiment, exchange and exhibit. The Brihatta Art Foundation is housed in a building that is unique in that it is the result of a recycling and upcycling process, and reflects the meaning of the district's name, Hazaribagh, meaning "A Thousand Gardens" in Bengali : this abandoned tannery space was chosen by Brihatta Art Foundation in 2020 to create an urban green space for hosting year-round residencies and programmes for creatives from all over Bangladesh. The Alliance Française de Dhaka, which organizes around thirty exhibitions a year, and Dhaka's main art galleries are in the Dhanmondi district, around ten minutes away. The resident will be able to stay at the Brihatta art Foundation as well as around Alliance Fraçaise de Dacca, shifting according to its needs.

Residency conditions

  • The resident should produce a minimum of 2 artworks during his/her stay at the Brihatta Art Foundation. One solo, and one with artisans/community
  • The resident should be willing to participate in different activities in educational institutions, workshops and collaborations with local artisans organized by the Brihatta Art Foundation.
  • The resident will be provided with a collective working studio house, as well as all necessary material to do crafing.
  • The resident will be provided with hybrid accommodation. Two spaces will be available: a room at the Brihatta Art Foundation and another one around Alliance Française de Dacca. The resident will be able to shift between these two spaces according to its needs.
  • The resident will be provided with three meals a day, along with tea/coffee available upon request.
  • In addition, the resident will receive a fixed stipend of EUR 330 per month to cover his/her living expenses.
  • The resident will receive a fixed remuneration of EUR 550 for the whole duration of his residency.
  • The resident’s travel costs to and from his/her home address will be covered by the French Foreign Services.

Eligibility criteria

  • The resident has to be autonomous in English.