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Pick of the week

In the 1890s, when Gandhi was thrown off the train at Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, an extraordinary chain of events was set in motion.

art and culture Updated: Apr 30, 2011 00:41 IST

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Archives of Utopia
In the 1890s, when Gandhi was thrown off the train at Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, an extraordinary chain of events was set in motion. In 1910, Hermann Kallenbach donated him a piece of land where Gandhi conceived the idea of a shared utopia. Tolstoy Farm, this experiment in community living, inspired Sabarmati ashram on his return to India. Nelson Mandela has written of the inspiration of Tolstoy Farm on the South African freedom movement. Curated by art historian Gayatri Sinha, the show, Tolstoy Farm - Archive of Utopia attempts to invoke the same spirit of shared Utopia. It features works by 17 artists, including paintings, photographs, videos and installations.

Till May 19, Lalit Kala Akademi, Rabindra Bhavan,Call 23387241

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A common thread
The idea takes time to unravel, but then the works grow on you. One common thread running through the show Raveling Texts: Works by Kevin McCarthy, Danielle Smith-Llera, and Eva Gustafson, which opens at the American Center next week, is the innovative use of texture and fabric. The works invite reading, or following the unraveling thread of an idea. The verb "to ravel" mean both to entangle and disentangle, to complicate and simplify. The artists acknowledge an admiration of traditional craft processes, but also a desire to challenge them.

As outsiders to the craft heritage, they strive to disassemble traditional forms and processes. Yet the contradictory meanings of raveling suggest that taking something apart also creates something new.

May 5-27, American Center. For details, call 23472290 and 23472232 or mail, amcenternd@state.gov

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In step with the spiritual
The Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra's summer ballet festival, hosted by culture impresario Shobha Deepak Singh, is an important dot on the Capital's cultural calendar. This year, it includes Meera, a dance drama on the life of Meerabai; Karna, in Mayurbhanj Chhau style and Parikrama, about the cycles of birth and death. Last but not the least, Durga depicts how women need to prevail upon the demons in our society, using their positive energy.
April 30-May 8.
Kamani Auditorium.
For details, call 23386429

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Captured in war-zone
Paramita Ghosh
paramitaghosh@hindustantimes.com
Ahelicopter on standby in Baghdad. A child - crying. A soldier and a farmer in a poppy field in Afghanistan. A Liberian general - dancing. Is that what war, and peace, look like when no one is looking? Photographer Ryan Lobo, represented by Tasveer Art, who has co-produced the acclaimed documentary 'The Redemption of General Butt Naked' says the most depressing thing about working in war zones was not the fear of death. "It is seeing the same thing within ourselves, in our conversations and in the way we treat our own people."

'War and Forgiveness', Art Motif, F - 213 C, Lado Sarai, 4246 4343, till May 6.