'Spaces Giving Shade: Art as
shelter from political turmoil & the function of alternative
arts education in Sri Lanka' listen to audio
Sri Lankan artist and activist Chandraguptha Thenuwara (Thenu)
will discuss the history of the Vibhavi Academy of Fine Arts
(VAFA), the pre-eminent but unaccredited arts academy in Columbo,
Sri Lanka, which he founded in 1993. Thenu will discuss his reasons
for founding VAFA, the political and artistic climate in Sri Lanka,
and why art education is important in times of political turmoil.
He will also discuss his own artistic practise and his public art
installation as part of BIG IN FALKIRK, the arts festival taking
place May 3-4 in Callendar Park, Falkirk.
The Vibhavi Academy of Fine Arts (pronounced 'WAH-FA') is the only
alternative art school in Sri Lanka. It began in 1993 with a single
studio, and started a formal school structure in 1996 with a grant
from HIVOS, a Dutch NGO.
Chandraguptha Thenuwara, Artist and Director/Founder of VAFA, is
also a Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Visual Art, University of Visual
and Performing Arts, Columbo, Sri Lanka. He studied painting at the
University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka, receiving his BFA in 1981, and
studied at the Moscow State Art Institute, Academy of Arts, Russia,
receiving an MFA in Painting in 1992. He lives and works in
Columbo, Sri Lanka.
The Wednesday Event at the Glasgow School of Art is a series of
informal lectures, screenings, panel discussions and pecha kuchas,
organised primarily by Cultural Engagement and Exhibitions, with
input from the rest of the school. Designed to be
cross-school, cross-platform and cross-disciplinary, some of them
might even make you cross!