Raqs Media Collective: Passwords for Time Travel

Raqs Media Collective, Passwords for Time Travel, 2017, Video, 10:01 mins. Selected by Project 88, Mumbai

3 November – 20 December 2020

Passwords for Time Travel (2017) by New Delhi-based Raqs Media Collective is made up of a sequence of video clips with superimposed texts that propose a set of new terms, co-joining science and spirituality, and which anticipate a futuristic language. Familiar yet unknown word hybrids like ‘Clusterrestial’, ‘Abracadastral’, and ‘Dronosapien’ combine the enigma of a spell with the precision of a dictionary entry. They scroll over images of landscapes, cityscapes, and lo-fi digital footage which elaborate upon the multiple meanings of the texts in an imagined glossary for future use.

Raqs Media Collective was founded in Delhi in 1992 by Monica Narula, Shuddhabrata Sengupta, and Jeebesh Bagchi. The collective works in new media & digital art practice, documentary filmmaking, photography, media theory & research, writing, criticism, and curation. Raqs has exhibited widely, including at Documenta, the Venice, Istanbul, Taipei, Liverpool, Shanghai, Sydney, and Sao Paulo Biennales. Recent solo exhibitions (and projects) include – Pamphilos at Fast Forward Festival 6, Athens (2019); Still More World at Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha (2019); Twilight Language at Manchester Art Gallery (2017-2018); Everything Else is Ordinary at K21 Museum for 21st Century Art, Dusseldorf (2018); If It’s Possible, It’s Possible, MUAC, Mexico City (2015) and Untimely Calendar at the National Gallery of Modern Art, Delhi (2014-2015). They are the artistic directors of the forthcoming Yokohama Triennale (2020).

Project 88 was established in 2006, in Mumbai. The gallery supports artists in long-term relationships to facilitate understanding and awareness of their continually evolving practices in India and in international venues. They work with established artists and with a generation of emerging artists within India who are making innovative, experimental, and ambitious works in all media and modes within a conceptual framework.

The Artists Film International 2020 programme responds to the theme of language. Local sounds, rituals and political realities feature, from the rhythms and images of a Bahamian Junkanoo to the contested ancestral lands on the desert border between Mexico and the USA.