The public site is a sensitive area and intervening in it is not easy especially if it is for a short duration project. Yet the process of engaging and interacting with people on the site as well as in their work related locations allowed me to understand city's socio-political environment and the complex relationships between urban development programs and the people, who are not a homogeneous body. It also helped build mutual alliances with the people. For me it is necessary that the dialogue becomes a two-way negotiation inviting multiple viewpoints. This is particularly relevant in a present city scenario with its ecological depredations on the one hand and its terrorism inflicted fears of street violence and bomb blasts on the other.
The video titled Barakhamba 2008 is based on a documentation of the processes of conversational interaction in terms of the people's shared experiences, ideas, their time and energy, anxieties and their particular visions. My position as an artist intervening in a public domain remained that of an interlocutor. Among several other issues they addressed the short-sighted developments taking place in urban design and architecture in Delhi and the inevitable repercussions thereof on the people, their localities their lives and the environment. By bringing different viewpoints onto one platform in the form of a 2 channel video installation, I invited the participant-viewer for a further discussion regarding our understanding of Public Art as an art practice. Included in the interaction are also some of the audiences who came to the site to view the video projection and became active participants.
The 3rd screen projected the footage of unedited, on-site conversations and interviews between the viewers and myself discussing our perceptions of art in public spaces and its significance, which to an extent reduced the distance between who was watching and who was being watched.