The River Ganga forms one of the most densely populated river basins in the world. It is also the most highly engineered landscape on the planet. Human activity combined with the dynamic nature of the monsoons has resulted in the river undergoing radical physical changes every year. For any future directive regarding the development and management of the Ganga to be effective, capturing this dynamism is essential.
Columbia Global Center in Mumbai and the American Center, invite you to the exhibition ‘The River Ganga: India’s Iconic Water Machine,’ researched and designed by Dr. Anthony Acciavatti from the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP) at Columbia University. By combining techniques from the arts and sciences, Acciavatti has created the first comprehensive visual profile of the Ganga River Basin in 50 years. This exhibition is a curated excerpt of his systematic, decade-long odyssey of mapping the basin’s infrastructural transformation that resulted in more than 25,000 photographs, 15 sketchbooks’ worth of drawings, 1,000 journal entries, and 350 original maps and models.
Acciavatti and his team will be in residence at the installation, regularly demonstrating how to use the new instruments and prosthetics he designed and built to visualize the choreography of water, soil, and celestial bodies. The team will also conduct “fieldwork” within the water machine throughout their residency, with real-time excursions through the machinery of the basin, Ganga’s Descent from the Himalayas, collecting scientific samples, photographing change across the landscape, and writing ethnographies of soil.
In conjunction with the exhibition and installation, from April 20-May 3 Acciavatti will lead a series of workshops in the foothills of the Himalayas, New Delhi, and Dhaka. Combining techniques from the sciences and arts with those of the humanities, the workshops will explore new ways of building and interpreting environmental data sets from the “ground up.”
Free and open to the public; please visit the website for more details. Visitors are required to carry a valid, original personal ID for entry to the venue. Laptops, iPads, power banks, cameras and other electronic items are not allowed inside and cannot be stored on the premises.
This event is sponsored by the Columbia Global Center in Mumbai.