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Must see events & exhibitions at this year's Serendipity Arts Festival!

8 days, 13 locations, 14 curators, +100 events and over 1500 contributing artists. The Serendipity Arts Festival is so much more than just a festival. It's a world of creativity one simply needs to experience for oneself.

So with so much going on, how can one possibly to see it all? Well, chances are you won't but that is 100% ok! Point is to immerse yourself in what you can and make the most of your time where ever you end up. So instead of overloading you, we simply want to draw your attention and point you in the direction of a few exhibitions, workshops & related events that caught our eye and we think you will thoroughly enjoy.

The first being Mundo Goa, a series of Goan lead exhibitions curated by Vivek Menezes. A celebration of the immense talent that resides within the state & a truly enriching addition to the festival line up. Here we want to draw specific attention to the Azulejos 2019 exhibition held at the Institute Camões as well as Solomon Souza's Goan 'Icon' mural series found in locations across Goa.

Next we dive into another great Goan spotlight, the Goa Familia special project curated by Lina Vincent. Followed by a fantastic line up of Culinary Arts events & workshops curated by Goa's own Prahlad Sukhtankar, founder of Panjim's Black Sheep Bistro & Black Market restaurants. From here to divert back to street art and suggest a curated walkthrough with the St+art India Foundation who have curated a series of projects in collaboration with 9 artists from around the world. Stepping off the streets and into the Adil Shah Palace, we can also highly recommend Imagined Documents, curator Ravi Agarwal selection of photographic works in the building's main hall, as well as Weftscapes, a stunning exploration of the Jamdani weaving technique curated by Pramod Kumar K G. Curatorial notes & exhibition explanations can all be found below along with a few helpful festival tips & information. Also, don't forget to follow us on Instagram @goa for inside stories & daily Serendipity Arts Festival highlights.

So go on, explore!

All festival information & curatorial notes kindly provided by the SAF 2019 team

Mural of iconic Sacrula in Saligao by Solomon Souza & Azulejos reinterpreted by Sharmila Coutinho

Visual Arts | Mundo Goa

Exhibitions & events curated by Vivek Menezes

"The history of India's western coastline is written in the ebb and flow of ocean tides, and the constant passage of voyagers who profoundly shaped the history and culture of the ancient entrepôt called Goa.

At the very heart of this civilisational experience is globalisation on an epic scale: confluential layers of meaning that extend back for millennia to mankind's earliest recorded history and continue to accrue in the wildly diverse contemporary experience.

Mundo Goa highlights the infinitely varied ways of being and belonging that artists, writers and intellectuals derive from this unique cultural scenario, with its deep-rooted connections across the subcontinent, to Africa, South America and Europe, and more recently North America and Australasia. Mundo Goa will have separate constituent parts, each reflecting identity as it is reflected, refracted, contested, alienated and re-constructed via diaspora, migration and other profound processes of change."

Self portraits by the 25 participating artists via @Azulejogoa

Azulejo 2019 | Mundo Goa - Group exhibition by 25 Goan artists

Location: Institute Camões - Centro de Língua Portuguesa, Panjim

"The dazzling culmination of a months-long journey of profound discovery for 25 Goa-based artists under the age of 40 years, who have interpreted and refashioned the iconic Islamic-Iberian ceramic tradition to suit their 21st century preoccupations. Azulejos spread from Andalucia through Southern Europe and North Africa across the oceans to South America, and eventually to Goa, where wonderful examples exist from the 16th-20th centuries. That tradition is remade anew, in tile work but also sculpture, painting, installations, digital art, and even classical dance. This year, the centre of gravity for this iconic art form has shifted decisively in the direction of the Mandovi, and into the heart of the lovely heritage headquarters of the partnering Instituto Camões (IC) at the Casa Basilio Dias on the Panjim waterfront." Learn more & follow along on Instagram @Azulejogoa

Participating artists: Sagar Naik Mule, Shailesh Dhabolkar, Vaishnavi Kamat Shankwalker, Bhisaji Gadekar, Fabian Gonsalves, Kalidas Mhamal, Sharmila Coutinho, Soumitrimayee Paital, Shilpa Naik, Nishant Saldanha, Mayuri Chari, Manuela Gomes, Ramdas Gadekar, Raksha Naik, Kausalya Gadekar, Waylon J. D'Souza, Aadhi Vishal, Impana Kulkarni, Nadia de Souza, Greig Fernandes, Rhea D'Souza, Leticia Alvares, Vatsala K. H., Maria Vanessa Desa, Kedar Dhondu

Works in progress via Solomon Souza

Icon | Mundo Goa - Mural series by Solomon Souza

Location: Exterior walls in Panjim, Saligao, Aldona & other villages across Goa

"Seven decades after his grandfather - the seminal Indian modernist painter Francis Newton Souza – left his homeland to live in London, Paris, and eventually New York, the brilliantly talented Israeli-British-Goan muralist and painter Solomon Souza arrived in India for the first time in mid-November 2019. At 26, he is already internationally renowned for spectacular street art portraits painted in tribute to heroes and figures of repute. Over the past few weeks, he has painted over 20 monumental murals to pay tribute to his grandfather, as well as many other relatively unsung and unrecognized icons of Goa who have largely failed to find suitable recognition from state or society. Wildly popular in the state already, Solomon’s amazing story brings full circle to India’s modern art history, with a twist that no one could ever have predicted."

Find a full list of Mundo Goa exhibitions here (8 total), as well as full program details for the Vista Mundo Conversations, a series of talks & panel discussion throughout the week by Aruna D'Souza, Amruta Patil, Brendan Fernandes, Antonio E Costa, Anajali Arondekar, Solomon Souza, Sergio Santimano.

Special Projects | Goa Familia

Curated by Lina Vincent & creative collaborator Akshay Mahajan

"Goa Familia is an evolving archive that aims to explore multidimensional aspects of family histories and was conceived with an aim for research and documentation of Goa and its people.

Directed at seeking out physical material such as photographs, postcards, ancestral heirlooms and memorabilia, as well as oral and recorded histories, the archive will become a participatory space for people to contribute personal and collective stories."

This is a project Lina also hopes to see continue to grow long after the festival is over. Documenting histories untold, Goa Familia invites everyone to contribute and share their stories for future generations to uncover. Learn more & follow along on Instagram @Goafamilia

The full exhibition can be found at the Old GIM, Ribandar throughout December 15th to 22nd, 2019.

Culinary Arts | Uniquely Goan & OOO Farms

Workshops & seed bank curated by Prahlad Sukhtankar

Mahua workshop & tasting with Desmond Nazareth

Location: Workshop area at Old GMC, Panaji

Timings: Dec 20 & 21 from 2:30 to 3:30pm

Bread-making Workshops with traditional poder & chef Vandana

Location: Workshop area at Old GMC, Panaji

Timings: Dec 21 from 10:30 to 11:30am

Growing food organically in pots with Green Essentials

Location: Workshop area at Old GMC, Panaji

Timings: Dec 18 from 2:30 to 3:30pm & Dec 19 from 12:30 to 1:30pm

OOO Farms Seed Bank

Location: Workshop area at Old GMC, Panaji

Timings: Dec 20 from 12:30 to 1:30pm

Take note there is also a Farmer's Market being held at the Children's (Art) Park throughout the festival as a showcase of produce, fermented and cured foods, beverages, artisanal food items, local recipes and practices that help build awareness about sustainability and the region.

Mural art by (1) Svabhu Kohli, 2019 & (2) Guido van Helten, 2017

Visual Arts | St+Art Goa

Curated by St+art India Foundation

On a mission to transform urban spaces into public art districts and make art more accessible to everyone, the St+art India Foundation has been working with talented mural artists from around the country for the past 5 years, adorning buildings across Panjim since 2017. Learn more & follow them on Instagram @Startindia

This year's collaboration with the Serendipity Arts Festival "will cement and establish Panjim as India’s fourth art district – after Lodhi in Delhi, Maqta in Hyderabad and Mahim (E) in Mumbai."

Participating artists: Twoone (Japan), Ricky Lee Gordon (South Africa), Ella & Pitr (France), Osheen Siva (India), Svabhu Kohli (India), A-Kill (India), Hanif Kureshi (India) in collaboration with Dr. Jyotindra Jain (India).

Locations across central Panjim & Taleigao. You can set off on your own in search of the murals or register for St+art Goa's curated walkthroughs. Reminder that spots are limited so sign up fast!

Explorations by Bappaditya & Rumi Biswas

Craft | Weftscapes: Jamdani across new horizons

Curated by Pramod Kumar K G - artworks by Bappaditya and Rumi Biswas

"Weftscapes examines a fresh approach to the creation and making of Jamdani fabrics, both in its weaving, choice of raw materials, patterns, designs and the end-product - a finished garment. Three inherently intertwined yet disparate stories come together for the first time in this initiative. The versatility of the Jamdani weaving technique involves the use of a supplementary weft technique.

The idea here is to explore the various possibilities of introducing different yarns into the weave. The versatility of Indian handlooms and the dexterity of its weavers allows for a unique experiment where diverse materials and objects are strung and woven in by hand through the fabric." 

The full exhibition can be found at the Adil Shah Palace throughout December 15th to 22nd, 2019.

Artworks by Sharbendu De & Yamini Nayar

Photography | Imagined Documents

Curated by Ravi Agarwal

"Looking at the staged photograph that flits between reality and fiction, the show aims to focus on works that employ various sorts of strategies and techniques to tell their story. These could involve recreating scenes from memory, constructing elaborate sets, or telling personal encounters. Constructed sets may involve sculpted or found objects re-consctructed and re-imagined as conceptual narratives."

Participating artists: Sharbendu De, Prajakta Potnis, Azadeh Akhlaghi, Dia Mehta Bhupal, Bani Abidi, Munem Wasif, Yamini Nayar, Vivan Sundaram

The full exhibition can be found at the Adil Shah Palace throughout December 15th to 22nd, 2019.

Helpful information & suggestions

Download the SAF App

Maximise your festival experience while cutting down on unnecessary printouts, the #SAFapp provides you with full programme access at the click of a button and can be downloaded from the Google Play Store and iOS App Store now!

Free festival shuttle service

No one likes a traffic jam, especially when you are trying to cross the road from one great exhibition space to the next. So help reduce the number of cars coming into the city and take advantage of the brightly painted Serendipity Arts Festival shuttle service cars & vans you're sure to see driving throughout the city. Pick up locations highlighted in the map above.

Venue Accessibility

Issues of accessibility have always been the bane of every festival or event, the world over. However the team at Serendipity are taking this matter to heart and ensuring all of their spaces are as accessible as possible. All locations are equipped with entry ramps and those with interior lifts are marked above.

Safe drinking water

You are encouraged to bring your own water bottle as fill up stations will be placed at all festival venues.

Register for FREE now if you are planning to visit & have not already!

Find a full list of exhibitions & programming here

Find Music, Dance & Theatre performance information here

Daily schedule & event timings can also be found here


All curatorial information kindly contributed by the Serendipity Arts Festival 2019 team.


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