media, information, the contemporary

Sarai Reader 09: Projections

Sarai Reader 09: Projections - Exhibition


A projection always involves an incandescent transference, some crossing of a void or darkness to effect luminous landings on a distant surface. Without projections, we would have no cinemas, no city plans, no forecasts, no wagers, no fantasies. Projections convect questions, magnify dreams and illuminate desires. Sarai Reader 09: Projections translates this imperative to act as a transport of illumination to build an axis of central questions…

Projections operates across two surfaces at once: on the printed page of this book (the ninth and final publication in the Sarai Reader series) and within the context of the contemporary art exhibition titled, ‘Sarai Reader 09: The Exhibition’. The exhibition and all the processes that arose within it anticipated the book’s concerns through an occupation of time, space and attention over a nine-month-long duration at the Devi Art Foundation, Gurgaon…

Projections is not a catalogue of the exhibition at the Devi Art Foundation. Nor is ‘Sarai Reader 09: The Exhibition’ a curated illustration of the concepts advanced by the book. Rather, the publication and the exhibition act as adjacent platforms from which new ideas and concepts, discursive as well as aesthetic, set off as travelling companions and find their separate yet occasionally converging itineraries.

This book is a roadmap of that journey.


Edited by: Raqs Media Collective and Shveta Sarda

Assistant Editor: Shyama Haldar Kilpady

Design: Pradip Saha / DamageControl

Design intern: Nirmal Singh

Cover image: Anisa Rahim

Back cover image: Chandan Gomes

Section separators: Pradip Saha


The entire book can be accessed and downloaded from the Sarai archive.


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Projections – Editorial Collective


“Life Injected with Life”: Locating Tolerance in Nasreen Mohamedi’s Abstraction – Robin Simpson

Making the Familiar Strange – Rohini Devasher

Projecting a Bengal Delta Settlement: Description of a Liquid Territory and its Development – Hans Hortig and Boris Murnig

Möglichkeitsformen: Expectation and experiment in the work of the Austrian Filmmakers Cooperative, 1968-69 – Andrew Weiner

Expanding the Possibilities of Painting in Space: Fluctuation between Timeless and Time-based Perception – Silke Eva Kästner


The Digital State of a Moving Image / The Moving State of a Digital Image – Barbara Sirieix

A Vision of Waste: The Political Imagery of Tents – Nandita Badami

V for What? About the Actuality of Walter Benjamin and Bertolt Brecht for Contemporary Activism – Alexander Karschnia

Projection and Urban Gluing – Thomas Mical

Not Written in Stone – Deepani Seth and Thomas Crowley (with Inputs from Vandita Sharma and Chiranjeet Borah)

The Cinema as a Concert Hall – Alexis Bhagat and Lauren Rosati


Curatorial Governmentality: Air Design and the Atmospheres of Community in Contemporary India – Anirban Gupta-Nigam

Walking a Furlong – Kiran Chandra and Douglas Murray

Theorising Art Interventions: Manifesta 6 and Occupy 38 – Andrea Liu

Crime, Power and Violence: The New ‘Anti-Urban’ in Gangs of Wasseypur – Divya Vishwanathan

Back to the Future! Re-visioning 21st Century Public Libraries via a Journey through Time and Space – The Seven Ages of the Librarian in Graphic Novel Style – Alice Corble and Sara Wingate Gray

Reading The German Ideology ‘Here’ and ‘Now’ – Runa Das Chaudhuri

Living in Virtual Lands: Some Reflections on Virtual Geography – Meera Baindur


Space Blankets and Emergency Weaves – Eline McGeorge

Heman Chong: Calendars 2020-2096 – David Teh

Agha Shahid Ali as Krishna: The Limits of the Secular in Kashmir – Akhil Katyal

From Networks to the Street: Global Connections and Local Issues – Aline Carvalho

Lanchonete – Todd Lester

Rio Cidade Olímpica – Yuri Queiroz Abreu Torres and Lucia Maria Sá Antunes Costa

Watching Indian Cinema in South Africa – Saba Sharma


Drawing as a Mental Exercise – Gagandeep Singh

Gurgaon Utopia – Anisa Rahim

Ruin – Atreyee Majumder

The Logics and Realms of Small Town Territory: The story of Tiruchengode – Bhuvaneswari Raman

Projections of an Urban Revolution – Myrto Tsilimpounidi and Aylwyn Walsh

The Unknown Citizen – Chandan Gomes

Built to Lapse: The New Transpiring of an Old Time in Architecture – Venugopal Maddipati

Subject: Exhibition without Objects – Sadia Shirazi

The First Kurdish Cinema Conference and the National Question – Ali F. Sengul


Landing Imaginaries: An interview with Geeta Kapur – Sabih Ahmed

Embodied Constructions: Banaras through Satyajit Ray’s Aparajito – Rohit Raj Mehndiratta

Thinking Art in India: A Semi-Virtual Lab – Manuela Ciotti and Gigi Scaria

Digital Constellation in the ‘Contemporary’ – Srinivas Aditya Mopidevi

Projecting Tambaku Chaakila Oob Ali: Reflections towards a Versatile Archive of Political Cinemas – Nicole Wolf

For the City Yet to Come: Planning’s New Visual Culture – Joshua Neves

How About We Meet and I Tell You About Music Notation? – Mehreen Murtaza and Shehzad Noor Butt


Apocalypse – Akash Gaur

Misprojections: Self in the Age of Technoscientific Culture – Shiju Sam Varughese

What Does the Moving Image Desire? – Ayesha Hameed

Taking Flight: Perspectives from the Depths of an Ideas Factory – Janine Ramlochan

When Ghosts Come Calling” Re-‘projecting’ the Disappeared Muses of Malayalam Cinema – Darshana Sreedhar and Vinu Abraham


Error | Glitch | Noise: Observations on Aesthetic Forms of Failure – Charu Maithani

Enhancement or Distortion? From the Claude Glass to Instagram – Robert Willim

Of Civics Fiction and Fictional Civics – Sisir C. Anand

Representations of Sovereignty at the Boundaries: An Ode to Elinor Ostrom – Anitha Suseelan and Rajeev Kathpalia

The Prognosis Monkey – Kavya Murthy


Sarai Reader 09: Art as a Place


Notes on Contributors