Srajana Kaikini (India) is a writer, curator, researcher keen on mapping intersections of cross-cultural knowledge pools. She is currently exploring the spillovers between the spoken and written word, ways of reading and its implication in present day cultural practices.
Srajana took part in de Appel’s Curatorial Programme 2012/13 in Amsterdam where she co-curated with her colleagues the exhibition Bourgeois Leftovers. The exhibition explored questions of value attached to cultural leftovers and the status of non-contemporary art language engaging with the early collection of the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven. Other previous projects include Ecologies of excess for KHOJ, Adventures of a Narcoleptic Flaneur at the Gallery of the School of Arts and Aesthetics, JNU, Delhi in winter 2011, and Familiar Strangers, as part of the IFA – KCFS film curatorial workshop project 2012, in Mumbai, among many other projects.
Urbanism and city spaces are her active interests and she plans to extend her architectural thesis (2009) around re-juvenating the Kalaghoda Art District, Mumbai into a longer enquiry into the status and validity of the art district model in the Indian context.
Srajana holds a Masters in Arts and Aesthetics from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi with a graduate degree in architecture. She is also a trained classical dancer of Odissi, and her passion for writing extends beyond academia into prose, poetry, cinema and travel.
Srajana is the third recipient of the Research Fellowship supported by the Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art and in partnership with Iniva and Goldsmiths College’s Department of Visual Cultures and the PhD Programme in Curatorial/Knowledge. Her focus will be to cross-counter Indian literary theories of suggestion – rasa dhvani, vis-à-vis ideas from Symbolist and Concrete poetry and examine contemporary art vocabulary that invests in notions of materiality and the ‘literal’ image through works of artists like Shilpa Gupta, L.N Tallur, and Sudarshan Shetty. By observing a trend of object-centric artistic discourses the research would engage with literary theories that invest in a different kind of materiality through language and mediation. In the process is a hope to address questions of accessing and reading of a work of art in times of global equivalence. The collapse in the possibility of suggestive meanings in this ‘literal’ language could either resonate with multiple possibility or turn completely opaque, thus sitting on the small divisive line that divides zero and infinity.