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In conversation with Lakshman Joseph de Saram

Lakshman Joseph de Saram is an internationally acclaimed Film Composer, classical musician & Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Colombo. We begin our conversation by looking at Lakshman’s childhood – the social milieu he grew up in as well as the circumstances of his household, which were early invitations to the world of […]

Groundviews featured at Colombo Art Biennale and Colomboscope 2014

Some photos from venues in the city that are part of the Colombo Art Biennale 2014, taken on 31st January 2014. Venues included the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute, JDA Perera Gallery, Lionel Wendt & Harold Pieris Galleries, Goethe-Institut and the Post Graduate Institute of Archeology (PGIAR). Sharni Jayawardene’s exhibition at Colombo Art Biennale 2014 (on display […]

Meetings across acrylic, canvas and dance: India-Sri Lanka Artists Week

I spent some time with 12 visual artists and 1 dancer, from Sri Lanka and India, at the Taj Samudra Hotel in Colombo today, who are part of an interesting and pioneering artistic collaboration between the two countries, from the 18 – 23 January. The artists work in the open near the hotel’s pool. Anyone […]

Launch of Short & Sweet: An anthology of (very) short stories on Sri Lanka

After over an year in production, ‘Short & Sweet’, Sri Lanka’s first hint fiction anthology is almost ready to hit the bookshelves in Sri Lanka, and online bookstores. As noted in the original call for submissions on Groundviews in August 2012, “But before form comes content. Twitter’s @sixwordstories demonstrates that even as little as six […]

The Politics of Paraya

Image courtesy Mind Adventures Theatre Company We may applaud Mind Adventures’ Paraya for many things. We may celebrate it for its visual mastery, its bold dialogue and the intensity and physicality in the acting. We may perhaps hail the innovation in its mode of presentation as brilliant. We may even call the message it offers […]

30 Years Ago: Audio recordings of panel discussions

Photograph by Tehani Ariyaratne, from 30 Years Ago To complement the launch of 30 Years Ago and focus on some of the issues the project is anchored to and inspired by, four panel discussions were on the 24th and 25th of August at Park Street Mews, Warehouse D in Colombo. The inaugural session featured Deshamanya Bradman Weerakoon and Dr. […]

Interview with Arun Welandawe-Prematilleke, Director of ‘Paraya’

Directed by Arun Welandawe-Prematilleke and produced by Mind Adventures, Paraya will begin its run on 18th of this month to the 21st. For any other theatrical production, that description would suffice, along with perhaps details on where to get tickets and more information on the box plan. Paraya though is different. It’s not going on […]

Book review: The Hungry Ghosts

The Hungry Ghosts is Shyam Selvadurai’s fourth novel, and almost certainly his best. The themes are familiar, from the personal strife caused by the narrator’s sexuality and ethnicity, to the political backdrop of Sri Lanka’s civil war, but the whole narrative is handled with an accomplishment and quiet authority that marks a real step up […]

Chandraguptha Thenuwara’s ‘Beautification’

Photo courtesy Vikalpa’s photo set of the exhibition Leading Sri Lankan artist Chandraguptha Thenuwara’s most recent exhibition entitled Beautification makes parody of contemporary Sri Lanka by suggesting that peace is but a façade and that the conflict is in fact on-going. Beautification serves as a reflection of life during and post-war. My conversation with Thenuwara […]

Daddy: A Mad Incestuous Dance

Incest in this country has probably been always spoken about, albeit in hushed, almost reverent whispers. Curiosity has probably always led to incestuous acts among children, but then, is that something we can say out loud? It is universally accepted that Adults who engage in incestuous acts are despicable. Filthy. Sick. There is a joke about […]

‘Flying Fish’ and the Constriction of the Arts in Sri Lanka

I met Sanjeeva Pushpakumara last year in a little art cinema off the Champs Elysees at the showing of Ashoka Handagama’s Ini Avan. It seemed he knew me from his days as a student or a journalist. A pleasant, articulate yet understated young man, of less taciturn intensity than Handagama, he debated Ini Avan with […]