Mumbai 2010, gefördert vom DAAD

If seems appropriate to begin with a modernity, which, like Edward Said’s memoirs, Out of Place, where to be a Palestinian Christian was to be homeless forever, is always in dislocation (from the metropolitan so-called hinterland) and in contentious displacement of ordered notions of society. While the equation between modernity and imperialism placed countries like India as the other; the peripheral, the not-yet group, the economic and cultural gains of imperilism were  dependent on the colonized, a result of interpenetration with the material and aesthetic notions of these countries. Modernity then is not pivotal but a result of a fusion, the ‚third space’  where ‚difference is neither the one nor the other, but something besides, in-between’. The modalities are not historicized or hierarchized but are open ended, where the hybridization of forms results in new entities. The polymorphous, multidimensional cultural norms form the paradigms for non-Eurocentric modernities.1 

MUMBAI. Voices of the City Voices. Moods. Coherences We have a look on the voice in two ways. It characterises a person. And we get information about, what it says. If we hear someone talking, we like to assent, if it´s right or not right. Both is connected to the cultural use of voice. For this reason the voice captures a multilayered and interesting position of witness, which imports more information, than just the meaning of “yes, it´s right”. At first, the mood of a voice becomes recognised. The German linguistic usage of voice, mood and coherence, there are different components involved, if the focus is on a particular sound of the speaking body. If anybody is known or probably known, the sound of the voice of a speaking person gives a lot of information. Just through the hearing and independent of the content, the person gets screened for us about actual situation and intentions. The voice is represented in the tone and articulated in the sounding body of a person, which  becomes recognised right now in this moment: “A note, tone or sound of the voice is setted in a corporal way, especially at strange places. The voice not affects clearly, as well as other sounds or animal sounds as well; the sound floats like in the air. The listener hears the voice, considers what has been said, including the meaning, and feels it.”2    The voice is a medium of the body and fills temporarily a place or space by anyone. Emmanuel Lévinas described already a sign of the speaking body.3  The sound and the unique expression of any person is connected to it´s local reference. The specific sound, as well as the movement of the voice, get treasured, more than the situation by itself. The listener registers and classifies it as well, if the information is only addressed to other recipients. Everybody, who passes or joins the situation, can overhear it. The voice has, next to the specific sound of the speaking body, the influence of local surroundings, which implement a point of reference to the people. It forces the sound characteristics of a local colour. Normally we hear and supose, from where anybody is. The dialect tells us, if anybody is from the Ruhrgebiet or from Tel Aviv. Other differences overlay local differences.  The doubling of the speaking voice correlate between the understanding and interpretation of words and the voice of the speaking body: Two mediums are part of it. The situation of conversation and it´s cognition describe a medial measure between voice and body. The speech defines the sound characteristics of the body and so it´s not possible to cut the body from important factors, which belong to it. The voice is part of a person, but voice and body not can be isolated: It´s the result of united interactions. The speech is a phenomenon of the voice in a social way and cultural act as well, referring to the implementation. That gives reason to have a look on the political conditions of the voice. The social moment is also present, if we hear to anybody. This cognition is based on the communication, and therefore communication is generated of social connections and their audible spaces. The common voice of speaking bodies includes something like a united track.  In big cities the people speak different, than in the country. The voice expresses a form of origin and education. If a Vietnamese learns German in Munich, or if a German learns Italian in Palermo, the local colour will be found in the linguistic usage. In the most cases the addition of sound characteristics not becomes appreciated. Every use of speech is possible and a few of them can be favoured. That is a cultural and intercultural question, which has to get answered in the historical background. Maybe no speech or language sounds better, than another one. The character of sonority has a reference to the choice of cultural preferences, which includes articulation, strange, or admiration towards different cultural levels. Those, who communicate in the same way ,shows to others their unique mode of speaking. Through the speech a community articulates itself and everybody evinces the feeling of belonging to the group. This significant ability of community is a cultural achievement, which links the people with their language, French people to French, or Italians to Italian. So far, the cultural mixture of European traditions has been reality in the last century. Sometimes more, sometimes less, one language have had the precedence, to make a difference between all of them, too. The political power plays a big role, which dominance and range a language has in regional speaking rooms and also referring to the status of the language to others and the self-conception of the users. Body and voice, community and power as well as language and cultural change depend on each other very closed. In the German language it is part in commands and loan words.   Which changes are in process in our days are shown, if we have a look to the attributes of different regions and culture spheres. The transmission of voice from phones, in movies or records is a good indicator. Through the recorded voice it´s easier to recognise the cultural filter of the speaking person. Meanwhile a question is, what the technical recording is not able to do. It conserves the formation of community of the voices, the social body with the local colour? What happens in case of cutting the voice from the body? It´s going to be lose their social character, this one is still the same one like before? And it´s political power? First attempt for an intercultural probe: The social message of the voice The patterns of sound of the voice can be found at their original places. There, it´s possible to analyse the process between voice and body. We like to dare a performative experiment by ´roaming` a district of Mumbay and `collecting´ voices. Our interest is focused on Wadis of the early colonial times. “Wadis belong to the typology of indigenous establishments of trade from the 18th and 19th century: Courtyards with stores on the first floor and flats on the upper floors. The frequency of use is high. Types of flats are rented one-room flats with common toilets, which are connected together with pergolas.”4  Traditional visions, which describe cityscape, urban landscape and the urban ground plan with periphery and city centre, do not contain the moving of the south Indian megacity. For the perception we make differences between the following tendencies: “In our days Southeast Asian cities combine obviously two components at one place: At first the ´static city´, which has been constructed of permanent materials like cement, steel and bricks. These cities are represented on maps as extensive areas with monumental present. Secondly we have a look on the ´kinetic city´, which seems to be in movement without extensive, closed areas – a three-dimensional construction of fragmented and based conditions, built of reutilised trash, planes of plastic, scrap, material and waste wood, between them satellite dishes, a snarl in power supply lines, cables. It´s a kaleidoscope of past, present and future, compressed to a mesh of alleys, blind alleys and a labyrinthine, mysterious landscape, that changes and reinvent itself permanently.”5  The dynamic produces sounds, which ´paste´ at the inhabitants tongue. Mumbay is yelling for changes, but without definable or clearly statements. Especially in India the physical connection is not muted. In particular we are interested in the linguistics of urban-body-interface, referring to the voice. It could be interesting to transfer the term “bodyspaces” from Sumathi Ramaswamy to the urban landscapes of voices.6 We get a formal access to an urban groundplan of community, which is located on historical ground, at the same time the city changes itself dramatically and dynamically. It seems to be interesting to begin with our studies. Therefore, in the topographic clusters we expect colonial and younger traces of communities, that express themselves. We like to find out, which type of local colour the speaking and communicating inhabitants and passing people on the street have. We can have recourse to our methodical experiences, which we made in the project “The speaking city” in Jerusalem. Referring to the trash-discourse, we designed a specific question to “catch” sounds of selected districts. All in all we were “hearing” to “sound trashes” and recorded a carpet of sounds in the city of Jerusalem. This pattern, the speaking city, was the result of our audio sequences. The political situation of this town is audible. We like to continue this idea and to “hear” for voices and transfer them. The main questions are: Have groups of speaking people ´one´ voice? Which attributes it has? Are we capable to register vocal concerns of other persons due to our experiment? In the end we like to know more about the political articulation of multitudes and localities in a global context.  Another interesting question could be, how reacts the political dimension of the local colour on one side, with the idea of the multitude and the development of new information and communication technologies on the other side? In India we know about subcultural tendencies in new technologies: “The `gray electronic market´, which blows in India, is attractive for ten thousand of young men and women. Their work as engineers, software programmers, hackers and businessmen is connected to the signals and rhythms of the global economy. The subversion of the pirate copied and recycled modern age has to be ensured through a bigger object of change, which is able to realise a change in the media landscape. And this happens in a time, within which the globalisation is responsible, that new contents appear on the agenda at all.”7 [1] Yashodhara Dalmia, Salima Hashmi: Memory, Metaphor, Mutations – Contenporary Art of India and Pakistan, New Delhi: Oxford University Press 2007, p.175 [1]                Dieter Mersch: Präsenz und Ethizität der Stimme, in: KOLESCH, Doris; KRÄMER, Sybille: Stimme. Annäherung an ein Phänomen, Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp Verlag 2006, p.212 [1]                Emmanuel Lévinas: Die Spur des Anderen. Untersuchungen zur Phänomenologie und Sozialphilosophie, Freiburg 1987 [1]                Wohntypologie in Mumbay. Eine Studie von CRIT, in: Indischer Inselurbanismus, Zs., archplus 185, Nov. 2007, p.46 [1]                Rahul Mehrotra: Die Bazarstadt – Metapher südasiatischer Urbanität, in: Katalog Wien: Kapital & Karma. Aktuelle Positionen indischer Kunst, Capital & Karma. Recent Positions in India Art, hg. von Gerald Matt, Angelika Fitz, Michael Wörgötter und der Kunst­­halle Wien, Ostfildern-Ruit: Hatje Cantz Verlag 2002, S.97 Siehe auch: Katalog Bern: Horn Please. Erzählen in der zeitgenössischen indischen Kunst, Kunstmuseum Bern, Ostfildern: Hatje Cantz Verlag 2007 [1]                Rahul Mehrotra: Die Bazarstadt – Metapher südasiatischer Urbanität, in: Katalog Wien: Kapital & Karma. Aktuelle Positionen indischer Kunst, Capital & Karma. Recent Positions in India Art, hg. von Gerald Matt, Angelika Fitz, Michael Wörgötter und der Kunst­­halle Wien, Ostfildern-Ruit: Hatje Cantz Verlag 2002, S.97 Siehe auch: Katalog Bern: Horn Please. Erzählen in der Partner & Kontakte in Mumbai: Gallery Chemould, Mumbai Hauptkontakt und ständiger Ansprechpartner www.gallerychemould.com Tel.: 9920498035; 992048720 → Ms Sandra Khare Gallery Maskara, Mumbai Mr. Abhay Maskara. He is the fore runner in establishing experimental art practices in India. www.gallerymaskara.com Tel. +91 22 220230056 → Mr Abhay Maskara The Guild Art Gallery, Mumbai Sitz in Mumbai und New York www.guildindia.com Tel. +91 22 2288 0116 → Ms Shalini H. Sawhney Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai größte Privatgalerie Indiens www.sakshigallery.com Tel. +91 22 6610 3424 → Ms Usha Gawde Gallery Chatterjee and Lal, Mumbai Mortimer Chatterjee and Tara Lal (Gallery chatterjee and lal) who are presenters of emerging as well as established experimental art www.chatterjeeandlal.com → Kontakt durch Sandra Khare Links: Projektbezogen & weiterführend: www.japaarts.in mohile parekhcentre.org www.artconcern.com (e magazine for art) mattersofart.net (e magazine for art) www.sarai.net (N delhi) www.khojworkshop.org (N delhi) www.indiaifa.org (Banglore) www.mumbaiartgalleries.com www.majlisbombay.org (Mumbai) www.ficart.org (N . Delhi)

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