presented by:

The Academy
of e-Arts

earlier iterations:

The 5th annual Carnival of e-Creativity (CeC 2010) was played out through February 19-20-21, 2010 , in the sylvan spaces of Sattal Estate, near Bhimtal, in the Himalayan Indian state of Uttarakhand.

CeC 2010 was part-funded by Pro Helvetia Arts Council of Switzerland

This incident is successfully concluded

Main Page ~ CeC 2010
Images from CeC 2010
Post-incident Report

Custodian's Report
This report probably represents the actual sequence of events incorrectly to some degree,
on account of pure exhaustion on the part of the author, during the incident itself.
Some Participant-Responses are appended at the bottom of the report

Post-Incident Report ~ CeC 2010
(The 5th annual Carnival of e-Creativity)

When we first announced that we were indeed pushing through into the 5th annual iteration of The Carnival of e-Creativity, about mid-2009, I’d joked that the image we’d built the incident-badge around was remarkably appropriate in depicting that I was thereby on my way to sort of squashing my head between a rock and a hard place.

Coincidentally, it is also now 10 years since I first began this whole madness of networking and connecting e-Creative Practitioners all over the world, with publication of the first CD-gazette of what I’d called The IDEA (The Indian Documentary of Electronic Arts), January 2000.

And, it has to be said that I’ve actually been "sort of squashing my head between a rock and a hard place" all the way since then with this work.

Much of the period covered some of the loneliest times of my life, when my work was not understood amongst so many of my peers, especially here in India, where I live and work. And, let it also be recorded here that many good people wrote me off as a complete idiot along the way.

Not surprisingly then, it does sometimes feel good today to see how my old central theme of networking and promoting innovation is increasingly becoming a public buzzword these days, right the way through institutions, corporate affairs, and governance; even though so much of that merry parroting still so completely ignores what we do.

And, it is hugely meaningful to me at least that we have at last come to a point where the quantum of primary participation from within India itself now squarely outstrips that from lands far away, notwithstanding the fact that non-Indian participation has actually dropped this time on account of the infamous 'financial meltdown' of 2008-2009, which has seen academic and cultural budgets slashed massively in so many of the 'advanced' countries that had earlier provided so much of our participation.

It is also hugely meaningful to me that the canvas of Indian participation this time stretches widely through science, engineering, music, video, education, art, and other streams of creative human endeavour, that all increasingly now intersect with each other in so many different ways, on the back of shared tools and technologies.

None of this would have come about without the belief and support of those good people all over the world, and also close to me, who kept the faith alive for so long.

And, I am immeasurably grateful to each and every one of them for that, just as I am as always equally grateful to each and every one of the participants who came together to play out CeC 2010.

The foregoing is an almost direct lift of the "Curator's Note" I wrote for the incident-catalogue of CeC 2010,.. in a desperate last-minute hurry, as always.

There’s a first in that, in regard to this series of incidents, in that, whereas I have always written some such thing or another for the catalogues of each of the 5 annual iterations we’ve run through so far, we have never posted any of the notes online before.

Something seminal had changed this time in the whole madness of it all, and this is the least of it.

But no, I can’t put my finger on what exactly that change might have been.

And so, let’s have a look at everything that happened.

CeC 2010 was formally announced mid-2009, even though various communications in the matter had been ongoing for months, even years, before that. This lead-up of just 6 months or so has become sort of standard practice by now, primarily because I’ve learnt to leave time to 'lick my wounds' after each incident, and also because one does of course have to leave some time entirely aside for other work every year.

However, as always again, some potential participants had already been invited in, since that is now almost an ongoing process right through the year, especially given that we do not issue any open-call for participation. As is well known to many by now, we instead prefer to unilaterally suss out, research, and only then "invite" potential participants into the madness, so as to hopefully bring together the studied broad canvas that we have always targeted ourselves to do from the beginning, rather than falling into the trap of gathering together just another selection of some of the same old same-olds of the global media-festival circuit.

Not that we really have anything against that, but yes, we most certainly would not like to put ourselves in the position of judging, or selecting/rejecting, 'applicants' who may be our peers, and better.

So, weeks and months went into reaching out to potential participants; convincing them to come aboard, and then; slogging to help some of them work out funding to cover their costs to be with us.

There’s no running away from the fact that we most certainly did not choose the easy road by not issuing open calls for participation.

And of course, it was all a lot harder to see through this time, on account of that nasty old 'global financial meltdown', which has seen cultural funding and travel-budgets slashed massively across institutions, corporations, governments, and also the pockets of so very many good people, all over the world.

But, there’s also no running away from the fact that CeC seems to have earned a pretty outstanding global reputation by now, which means that we were sure going to get where we needed to go, just so long as we kept up the slog. And so, though ‘tis most gratifying of course, there’s actually little surprise for us in the fact that a lot of folks have been especially congratulating us on the canvas of participation and content that we eventually managed to pull together this year.

And, a good part of that was most certainly about our incredible good fortune in having Ima Pico and Wilfried Agricola de Cologne separately aboard once again, as co-curators on short-creative-videoworks (SCVs). Which, not to forget, was in itself also very special this year, in that it marks 10 years of Wilfried’s independent work on globally networking and curating short-creative-videoworks, and also other creative new media practices and practitioners.

No less special though was that we actually had Ima Pico be with us personally this time.

Anyway, to get back to the story, there was obviously also a bit of reaching out for potential funding to cover costs at our end; a bit desultorily of course, as has been the case ever since the first iteration, in 2006, when we learnt the hard way that an *event* for the corporate sector in India these days is apparently expected to ideally run along the lines of, "important stakeholders will make up the gathering; there’ll be booze, and; a movie starlet will dance a raunchy number."

To cap that, it obviously also didn’t help at all that we are actually still battling to be understood in this crazy ole country.

And so, it was absolutely brilliant to have the very wonderful Chandrika Grover, of the Pro Helvetia Arts Council of Switzerland in India, suddenly let drop, in the course of a casual conversation along the way, that she might be amenable to letting us have a bit of leftover funds from her kitty, in support of the madness. And, we were obviously more than delighted that that would be accompanied by a selection of Swiss electroacoutics, that would play through the duration of the entire incident, in an exclusive Swiss Audio Zone.

The sum involved wasn’t huge of course, or even very ample for that matter, but what it did most certainly do was lift a lot of pressure off my own shoulders, in regard to putting together a good matrix of build-up and infrastructure for the incident itself,… even though it eventually came through quite late in the day, by when its positive impact upon the actual madness could not really be leveraged quite entirely.

But, we were off, and I moved up to Sattal about 20 days before the incident to begin groundwork with a wee bit of a song in my heart this time, which made for a very nice change indeed from the cringing wallet I’d otherwise become used to having for company before every such incident in the past. And of course, there was also the very special aspect in this case that we most certainly wanted to get well past all of the hurdles and hassles that had attended upon our first such excursion to play out the circus up to Sattal, with CeC 2009.

In the event, much of the improvement we’d hoped for was indeed achieved. Local help was hired well in advance, even though a couple of lads had to subsequently be let go within 2 weeks, on account of being inappropriate to our needs. We took aboard a different tent-wallah than the one who’d provided us our greatest nightmares of 2009, and were well rewarded with an excellent edifice for the price we could pay. Stage-lighting was taken over by us entirely, with an excellent combination of CFL and LED lamps that amazingly ran upon just over 100 watts of electricity, as opposed to the entirely idiotic and inadequate 3000 watts of Halogen lamps that we’d had the year before. A good generator was put in place, to cover for possible electricity failures; which coincidentally did indeed visit us for 2-3 hours each day. A better catalogue, better fliers, and better posters, were all printed up in Delhi itself, well before I went up.

And, amongst much else that I’m forgetting right now, we even managed to make a small contribution towards the hugely generous audio-support that was once again brought up for us from Delhi, by Ashim Ghosh (and his inimitable assistant Mangesh Dhaundiyal),… who so very kindly and supportively put that towards improving the set-up rather than covering the real costs incurred in actually just providing us the support. And, not surprisingly, the participants were once again absolutely delighted with the overall sound management, and quality.

All of which brings us to the incident itself.

As usual, Day-1 began with breakfast and the meeting between just Primary Participants, Guest Participants, and Special Invitees, which has over the years partly become the traditional handing-over ceremony wherein I sort of wash my hands off everything in the incident that is to follow, on the basis that it then belongs collectively to everyone involved.

But, there’s actually little to be said about that here, since one just had to be there to get it. However, what is worth mentioning is that we chose Session-Chairpersons from amongst ourselves once again this time, as we had always done before, other than just the experiment we’d essayed at doing without in the first iteration we’d played out up in Sattal, in 2009.

And yes, we also all agreed on a basic reformat of the incident, with some performances scheduled to open the post-lunch sessions for a change, rather than being all bundled together into just the evening sessions, as we had always done before. On top of that, since we were rather full up, we also requested performers to deliver their presentations along with their performances, where possible, which fortunately suited most of them just fine.

Meanwhile, all of the incident infrastructure was up by now, and fully operational: Screenings of SCVs and Unaccompanied Presentations was ready to roll in the main room of one half of Bishop’s Cottage, with the Swiss Audio Zone housed in the main room of the other half of the cottage; both very ably supervised by young Pankuj Kanwal, son of my neighbour and good friend Mahinder Singh Kanwal. The party-tent was as good as we could hope to have up in the mountains, proudly standing in the large lawn directly in front of the cottage, totally rain-proofed on the outside,… with the inside entirely panelled all the way around with a repetitive cloth print of a gloriously kitschy landscape that no one had asked for, but which everyone seemed almost perversely to love on first sight!

Accordingly, CeC 2010 finally opened to the general public right on schedule, after lunch on Friday, February 19, with a performance scheduled to be delivered by the Hindustani classical vocalist Aparna Panshikar, in what has also become a sort of tradition with the incident, since she has very supportively been the first performer of every Carnival of e-Creativity so far, ever since the first, in 2006.

But of course, before we could really get any of that underway, I did have to go through the motions of delivering a minor 'speech' of sorts to formally launch the public proceedings. And, this time, I included a very brief presentation of a robotic drum I’d been developing over the preceding months, with incredible hardware support from Tom Scarff (developer of the Miduino board, in Dublin), software support from Matthew John Davey (the famous Hardoff, master of Pure Data, in Japan), and also advisory and direct assistance from Joy Sharma (electronics engineer/evangelist, in Delhi). All of which obviously means that I have to personally bear full responsibility for the drum’s eventually sparking and blowing up with a snap-crackle-pop, right there on stage, in front of everybody, not two seconds after I closed my drum-solo presentation of the device, with the elated announcement that, "The proof of concept is delivered"!!!

Call me perverse if you will, but I couldn’t have asked for any better opening for the entire incident. There’s only good to be had from good laughs, and the gathering sure got their share from that. Me too. LoL

(for the record: a post-mortem later established that it was only the solenoids in the drum that had blown, because they were just plain rotten)

And, with that, the way was clear for Aparna to take over, performing with Paola Lazo, electroacoustician and voice-artist from Chile, Jayen Varma, the 'world’s fastest bassist', and Michael Ormiston, overtone singer and exotic instrumentalist.

However, as was so sadly the case with so very many of the performances and presentations of the incident this time around, I just happened to miss this entirely (though I later heard it was fantastic), being as I was riding a mad merry-go-round, juggling a zillion little behind-the-scenes balls in the air the while.

Which of course meant that, upon returning to the main tent shortly thereafter, I was delivered the complementary heart attack of finding that the entire session itself seemed to have wrapped up after the performance, with everyone on the point of dispersal, having seemingly assumed that the performance in itself comprised the whole of the session!

O well! More balls to juggle that was, but juggle them I did, somehow, even though it also then transpired that almost all of the Primary-Participants scheduled to deliver presentations in the session were entirely unprepared.


Not surprisingly, almost everything of CeC 2010 is therefore sort of blurred for me after that, even though it all seems to have played out just fine in the end.

Dhananjay Gadre’s presentation came somewhere along the way, inimitably cheering up the gathering with his incredible little electronic gee-gaws, and irresistible personality.

Emma Ota also delivered her presentation that afternoon, fascinating all with her knowledge, experiences, insights, and endeavours.

Arun Mehta somehow managed to rush out and fetch back his laptop from his digs, to share with all his fascinating endeavours at empowering children with motor-dysfunctions.

Ima Pico came through smooth as silk, as I’ve so delightedly learnt she always does, leading all through a wonderfully panoramic introduction to her incredible large-scale image works, as well as some of her global curatorial work, and other projects.

Ingrid Lode took the 'podium' too, shyly blushing a rosy pink as she played back a couple of her incredibly beautiful recorded songs in the course of her presentation.

I think Ish S was also amongst those who came through with their presentations that afternoon, smoothly driving it into an extraordinary solo performance, with computer, controllers, and guitar.

But, I may be wrong here, in that Ish might actually have delivered that presentation and performance the next day, or possibly even the day after that!

In the same way, it may or may not also be the case that Bettina Wenzel delivered her presentation and performance that afternoon (or another), including the incredible piece wherein she so subtly and so stylishly tickles a projected image of a corner of a room, with her radical live voice-work routed through Pure Data/GEM.

As I said, too much remained too fuzzily with me this time, probably in some part on account of the fact that I was for the first time seeing the incident through without Deepak Thapa, my own personal assistant, who was unable to be with us this time, as he was holding the fort back in Delhi, since my wife was coincidentally also travelling on work at exactly the same time.

But, we made it through the session just fine in the end.

And then, after a wonderfully refreshing tea-break, we were all back in the party-tent for the magic evening presentation and performance by 'Intervolution', the band spun together by Lawrence Casserley, who very kindly proposed that the genesis of it all lay in earlier iterations of the incident that he had participated in.

Nonetheless, we’d never seen or heard anything like this before. The line-up alongside Lawrence (playing the latest avatar of his ever-evolving Signal-Processing Instrument), which he’d originally brought together on a European performance tour, included voice work by Aparna Panshikar, Bettina Wenzel and Ingrid Lode, with the inimitable Michael Ormiston providing overtone drones and extraordinarily diverse instrumentation.

And, this time around, almost everybody seemed to know that my little homemade home was just around the corner, which meant that there was no getting to bed after a glorious dinner at the Estate up until wwwway past midnight.

And so, to Day-2.

Jayen Varma took the podium during the course of the morning session, to tell us of his single-minded slog over the years to emerge as the ‘world’s fastest bassist’ (in strikes per second). And he was kind enough to demonstrate how the speed came from adapting percussion techniques of traditional Indian music, which had most fortuitously been his musical focus before he turned to the bass guitar. Also, not to forget, he also shared with us all how he had actually made his very nice bass guitar himself too!

Joker Nies also delivered his presentation about then, which turned out to be an absolutely brilliant guide to circuit-bending, that obviously had the electronics engineers amongst us all agog. After all, there probably isn’t any B.Tech to be earned anywhere in the world that would educate one to conjure the sort of magic manifested in Joker’s mind-bendingly modified Omnichord,… for example.

But, as with Dhananjay Gadre and his delightful presentation the day before, electronics engineers do indeed have solid meat on their bones nonetheless.

And Joy Sharma, Dhananjay’s ex-student, was right on hand to follow up after Joker, with a presentation that went all the way from an overview of the work he’s been doing to popularise creative electronics amongst children, through to a demo-performance of the standalone robotic-drum that he’d made especially for the occasion ~ inspired, coincidentally, by his thinking he could do better than my own design, when he’d kindly lent me a hand with making my version. And, sure enough, his drum played just fine, via a straightforward hardware sequencer-interface. And it most certainly did not blow up in front of everybody like mine had done!

And with that, we were all off for another one of those fantastic lunches that Vijay Patni and the Sattal Estate crew so specially put together for us, up at the lovely little Roshnara Cottage, just around the corner from our main public venues.

But, that was one lunch a lot of us sort of rushed through, for the performance due up right after that involved 4 young girls from a local school, with whom Zeenath Hasan and Rune Sochting had been working for a couple of days, to have them perform for us on special hardware and software. A 'workshop' sort of thing altogether, such as we’d never had before. Something I personally definitely did not want to miss. But, something that I eventually did indeed miss, as I opted to instead relieve young Pankuj Kanwal from his manful handling of the screenings and Swiss Audio section, so that he could see the performance, since he’s a local lad.

And, I’m perversely glad he stayed on to also see the performance that came right after that, of an experimental collaboration between the Hindustani classical vocalist Vidya Shah and the American voice-artist and electroacoustician Dafna Napthali. But, this one I did vividly regret missing, even as I sat through strange sounds and projections of the screenings-section in the cottage directly behind the stage the while, because I’d sort of initiated the collaboration myself, several months earlier, and also because I knew Vidya to be a super singer, stylistically very different from Aparna, who, unlike Aparna, had never tried anything even remotely like this ever before.

I wouldn’t want to whine in any way at all about missing that though, because I’d had the extraordinary privilege of having Vidya sing, along with Jayen Varma on bass, in my homemade home just the night before. Which was incomparably magic.

In any case, getting back to that fuzzy memory of mine, it occurs to me that this was also about when young Dhanya Pilo finally delivered her presentation, having been entirely unready to do so the day before, as had been originally scheduled, and having then dilly-dallied her way through at least one session more, still without doing so.

But, Dhanya’s certainly not counted for no good reason by many in Mumbai to be amongst a small bunch of very special young folks to watch out for over the coming years in that city. And her presentation therefore obviously did offer all of us some little hint to what that was all about, as she drawled her way through an overview of her work in filmmaking and live video-jockeying, and also that whole business of her driving fascinating creative community-initiatives in her city, as with the well-known 'Wall Project'. And of course, there was much she left out too, as for example her being a team-racing sailor too.

Whew! The kids these days!!

Like Abhinay Khoparzi too for that matter, who also delivered a presentation and performance that afternoon (if not the next, of course); revealing himself to be quite the sort of young person I’d for too long thought to be almost entirely missing from the matrix of modern Indian society. Sure he did the done thing that a lot of other creative kids of his age have been doing of late, of playing nice beats and grooves of electronic music, but, at the same time, here was the first young Indian I had ever met who was familiar with oddballs such as Max/MSP and Pure Data, who also even got down and dirty on creative electronics, as a musician. A Monome-maker, no less! And yes, I’ll have one too, if I may.

With that, we moved on to Lise McKean’s presentation, which was surely one of the most priceless of the entire lot that we were privileged to have, in that she had boldly ventured almost entirely out the box of her own specializations and profession, by assembling a creative team of friends and associates to put together a very special audio-visual work aimed directly at the local populace. In some ways, that is where we all need to get to with a good part of this whole enterprise. And, when counted alongside how Zeenath and Rune had directly involved local schoolgirls in their own presentation/performance, it looks reasonably well like we might indeed be slowly getting there too.

Anyway, if I remember right, Manjula Jhunjhunwala took the stage somewhere about then, and led us all through a fascinating history and overview of the educational network she’s grown over the years, beginning with the little nursery school that she’d originally launched, essentially just because she couldn’t find one she thought good enough for her first son when he came of age where she happened to live. And there was priceless inspiration to be had from it all for the gathering, in tracing the route whereby she eventually even established a teachers training institute, so as to carry forward and also continuously evolve her innovative vision in regard to how and what education should be all about.

Paola Lazo then came on to deliver her presentation, which included a sparkling portfolio of visuals and audio works ranged all the way from the classical through to radical voice-works and extreme electroacoustics. Here was one lady who caught at least me totally by surprise, partly on account of the range of her creative work, but also partly because her delightful personality was entirely at odds with the impression I’d gathered of her from the apparently angry or worried expressions she seemed almost uniformly to favour in all of the photographs I’d seen of her before then.

But, to get back to my confused memories of it all once again, we broke for tea sometime after that, quite possibly following another presentation or two that I’ve misplaced back or forth in this report. (In fact, I’m really hoping I don’t entirely miss anything here)

And that brought us to the performance of the evening, which just happened to be the extraordinary combine of Hans Tammen, on his outrageously Endangered Guitar, with Joker Nies playing a minor plethora of twisted electronics, and Dafna Napthali dancing her voice-work through a customised DSP patch. Strange and beautiful stuff this was, breaking away almost entirely from traditional notions of what music is meant to be. Which reminds me that Hans did deliver a presentation too, somewhere along the way through the three days, wherein he lent us all some insights into how and why he ventured beyond the given traditional paradigms and straitjackets of what music seems to have become over centuries and millennia. And, to be honest, there were times in the performance when it all seemed almost incomprehensible, and then, there were also times when it seemed that we were really onto something pretty spectacular, leading on to somewhere very special in the not too distant future of such experimental sound art.

However, where it did lead up to in the meanwhile, right after another very special dinner all together in Roshnara, was another quite late night, once again in my homemade little home around the corner.

Day-3 then naturally dawned to me being right on the verge of a breakdown, from sheer exhaustion.

And, that is probably why I may very well be recording presentations from Day-2 here in Day-3, and/or vice versa.

I may be wrong, but it was probably Parag Gandhi who made the first presentation of that last day, in which he led us all through a selection of the fascinating sorts of websites he designs, and also hopes to design into the future, alongside the creative community-initiatives that he additionally drives, along with Dhanya Pilo and other associates in Mumbai. From what he shared with us all, it seems clear that we shall all be seeing a lot more interactivity on the internet into the coming years, and that he’ll be somewhere right near the forefront of it all.

On the other hand, it may instead have been Michael Ormiston who took up that first slot of the day, presenting an extraordinary overview of his overtone singing and incredibly diverse musicmanship, which we all also had the good fortune to witness in performance with several of the other musicians and electroacousticians over the course of the three days, not least amongst which I will count an impromptu jam that the both of us essayed, most delightfully for me I may add, during a short break somewhere along the way; after which he did me the singular honour of gifting me the Burmese Jews-harp of his that I had played.

Preeti Monga followed in on that, with an absolutely delightful exposition of how she had partnered technology to address some of the challenges of being blind, so as to live a fulsome personal and professional life. And, although I must admit that I’ve obviously known for awhile about text-to-speech and the like, it was absolutely amazing to see her navigate her way through operating her laptop, almost as though it were an extension of herself. No surprise then to know of her professional successes and standing as a motivational speaker and trainer of folks with perfect 20-20 vision.

Then came young Rahul Dinakaran, all the way from Tamil Nadu, whom I count as being a really special one of our catches for CeC 2010. After all, here was our first mechanical engineer of this entire series of incidents so far, and that too, a professional prototyper and machine-designer to boot. As you’d expect then, aside from being heartily impressed with the unique range of machines that he has designed and produced so far, some of us in the gathering most certainly had our fingers crossed in the hope that we might have permanently twisted his creative thinking by having him be amongst us through the duration, so as to have him yield exciting new devices for the larger creative community into the future,… perhaps in league with some of the electronics engineers whom we’ve luckily also been able to ensnare into the circus so far.

With that, we moved on to Shazeb Shaikh, whose fascinating range of creative works includes an unique initiative at assembling a global creative community, which comes so close to what we too have been trying to do for so long with The AeA and CeC, that we’ve already invited him to think of coming aboard this rickety old ship, with full encouragement to attempt a takeover, at the head of a possible 'successor generation'.

Finally, it was at last the turn of Sohail Arora, breakthrough young networker of electronic musicians across India, whose professional standing already has him totally in charge of putting together musicians from all over the world for a massive new cultural festival up in Ladakh, supported more than generously by the Tourism Board of that state. Surprisingly though, he did not deliver any performance at all in CeC itself, even though he is also a lead-member of a raging club band of his own down in Mumbai. So, there’s something we are just going to have him come back and make up for someday.

But meanwhile, with that, we were now ready for the first real performance of Day-3, which happened to be Kurt Korthals (I think), who very stylishly blew away any impression that any one of us might have gathered that he was just a sweet and guileless young lad, by engineering three separate experimental collaborations for his performance, over lunch, just before taking the stage, with Aparna Panshikar, Bettina Wenzel, and Ingrid Lode, respectively. And, boy-o-boy, the way he shifted stylistically to suit each one of the ladies’ singing, one after another, was something I would never have believed could be done in such a seemingly ad hoc manner, if I hadn’t been there to see and hear it for myself.

For that matter, Lionel Dentan, who followed in on that, delivered a pretty unbelievable performance too, including a surround-sound exposition that you just had to be there to believe. As far as I’m concerned, it is one of the sweetest bits of musical good luck for me that this wonderful young man lives right here in Delhi. For, leaving aside his live music itself, which can leave no one in any doubt about his mind-boggling skills with a spectacularly singular range of devices, his performances are just about the most delightful that one could ever hope to witness. And, he certainly didn’t let anyone of us down in this instance.

That left just Ish Sehrawat to deliver the last of the 'scheduled' performances, which caught me quite by surprise in being incredibly dense and diverse, in comparison to his incredibly small kit, which seemed to me to have been made up of just a laptop, an audio/midi interface, and an acoustic guitar. Not surprisingly, the young man has a very special reputation as a musician in Delhi, which sees him working on all sorts of fascinating projects, ranged from films through sound-art and even commercial CD-releases.

And with that, we were finally on to the last session of the day, which was thrown open to experimental collaborations between anybody and everybody who wished to participate in it from amongst the gathered musicians and electroacousticians.

This produced fascinating highs and also almost regrettable lows, of sweet music sometimes and just massively abstract sound-clouds at other times. And, also no surprise that everyone on stage, and also spilling off it, most certainly seemed to be having an absolutely smashing good time of it.

But, what did surprise and indeed amaze at least me was how young Mangesh Dhaundiyal quietly managed the audio through it all, with up to 12 performers at a time routed though the modest little PA rig that his boss, Ashim Ghosh, had left him to handle all alone for the very first time.

Everything had gone beautifully, as far as I was concerned, and also as far as what most of the participants assured me was their impression too.

Which brought everything that much closer to perfection to have had the incomparable Ashok Mehta sort of sit out that last jamboree, quitely editing out a selection of photographs in a corner, from the innumerable number he'd been hopping around everybody else to shoot over all three days, as a gesture of support to the madness, so as to bring everything to a close with a quick selection from his gathered images, projected in perfect sequence to live music from Ish Sherawat, in what was an absolutely magical recap of it all for everbody present.

And, that puts me in mind to also gratefully acknowledge the other shoulders we all leaned upon to see CeC through this year: including Vijay Patni and his incredible Sattal Estate crew, who made such a special effort to keep all of the participants and guests comfortable, and well-fed with absolutely wonderful meals along the way; Ashim Ghosh for so generously providing us his PA system all the way from Delhi once again, and also for lending us his brilliant assistant Mangesh to manage it; young Pankuj Kanwal, for bravely handling all of the unaccompanied screenings, plus the Swiss Audio Zone, and also the back-up electricity generator, almost all alone; his father Mahinder Singh Kanwal for providing key back-up and support for me on a million little matters all the way; my good man Subhash Chandra Arya, for helping me with so many of the preparations that we had to get through before the incident, and for also backing-up Pankuj through the incident itself; and of course, so many other good folks I just cannot remember individually now; to all of whom I am equally grateful, for all together seeing us safely and happily through what in the end was another magic spring-weekend up in foothills of the mighty Himalaya.

Shankar Barua
March 2010

Some Responses


CEC was kickass !!!
great show :)
I'll keep in touch and spread the word about your fantastic festival!
thanks for the amazing cec festival
Thanks for the crazy times!
thank you very much for inviting me to participate in such a diverse and colourful project which brings so many people from different backgrounds together
Met some amazingly talented and intelligent people there...
I have never experienced anything like this
A reinvigorating vacation over the weekend. Met some incredibly interesting people too!
I really enjoyed metting the interesting particpants and would love to come back again.
You are doing it bloody well and you are unique
it has been a great event due to everybody's contribution!
I did not get to tell you how way beyond my expectations the festival was (and my expectations were high to begin with!!)
gratitude for egging us on
... being with all of you has been a real treat for us.
CeC was great! Thanks for everything.
Met some amazingly mad, inspired and lovely people.
The event has won a special place in our hearts very quickly.
CEC 2010 was really Great! You are just amazing !!
Very inspiring, lots of new contacts,..
It was a wonderful experience and I met lots of great artists&people!
I enjoyed my time at cec very much and found new insights into other creative practitioners' works which I am very glad of and most of all made new friends.
Thanks for inviting me to this wonderful event.
.. but, when the music began, it quite complimented the madness.
There was some seriously yummy home cooked food, collaborations during the course of the 3 days of music, treks around the lakes, camp fires, after event jamming, boat rides and night walks in the moon light.
Thank you for bringing such an interesting group of people together
I hope we may all keep in good dialogue and that new things will arise from this point.
CeC was obviously FUN !!!
So, thanks for non-commited inspiration.. I hardly get it from any other Indian contemporary
... but I'm damn glad it all worked out..
It was an awesome experience this time.
I'm hoping to be there for the next edition too.
Looking forward for many more such event in future
You have all the reason in the world to be proud of what you put together here...o my!

:::: SUPPORT & THANKS ::::


:::: Infrastructure Support ::::
Ashim Ghosh
Mangesh Dhaundiyal
Sattal Estate
Shankar Barua
Pankuj & Mahinder Kanwal

:::: Participant Support ::::
Arts Council of England
American Music Center (Composer Assistance Program)
National Fund for the Arts, Chilean Government
The Danish Composers Society
The Wahlgren Foundation
Bandish ~ The School of Music
The Academy of Electronic Arts
Sattal Estate

:::: Thanks also To ::::
Chandrika Grover, for believing
Tom Scarff, for a special hardware contribution
Matthew John Davey (aka HardOff), for creating a special PD patch
Joy Sharma, for electronics advisory
Swar Systems, for a special software contribution


The Academy of Electronic Arts (also known as The Academy of Experimental Arts) is a Public Benefit Trust that serves as a learning, sharing, mentoring, networking, benchmarking, empowering and broadly inclusive, but non-educational, institution
Managing Trustee & Incident Director for CeC 2010
Shankar Barua

Co-Curator: Ima Pico (Spain)
Co-Curator: Wilfried Agricola de Cologne (Germany)

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