January 30th, 2012 · RoseLee Goldberg

The Taj Mahal, a Rickshaw Ride and Other Adventures in India

India is wonderful and intense. Rushing through a sea of people, oxen, three wheeler "taxis" carrying eight or ten under tag rag and torn canopies, monkeys, donkey drawn carts, trucks, buses made of paper thin tin and covered in colorful writing and draped with bands of shriveled flowers, milk containers, gas carriers, families of four on mopeds, families of friends on foot, some going in the wrong direction, all at 75-plus miles per hour, using only the horn blasting continuously in concert with thousands of others to navigate, negotiate, and propel through small spaces, which are rushed into and left behind as fast as others skate into position for their non-stop second moving forward. Four hours there, five hours back in the dark with blinding lights making every passing of vehicles and other said obstacles described above -- especially people in Saturday night party mode, as though all those living in the dusty shacks behind the road come out to play on the shoulder of the racing highway -- an unmitigated miracle.

Back in Delhi, the cacophony no less, we spun around several more spinning roundabout (dodgems have nothing on this) to our hotel to change, only to rush out again (same roundabouts in reverse) to another hotel, the Taj, for a prize giving ceremony for "best of show" amidst 500 art fair devotees and hundreds of hellos.  Back to our hotel at midnight for a late night bite in the dining room, still filled and full of chatter. 

About to begin the day again; a breakfast for curators, then to the fair, my talk at 2:30, tv interview, another press interview, and studio visits with three artist!

Somewhere in between a rickshaw ride in old Delhi to feel the rush of its warrens of alleys, overhead hanging garments, and array of food stalls.

RoseLee Goldberg, art historian, critic, curator and author whose book Performance Art: From Futurism to the Present, first published in 1979, pioneered the study of performance art.  She is the Founding Director and Curator of Performa.  

End of article

Tags: india, roselee goldberg Category: