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11:15, Thursday 28th June, Bragg

Director: Paraveen Kumar (India)

Year: 2006

Run time: 59'

Location/Ethnic group: Madhubani, North Bihar, India/ Paswans, Brahmins, Kayasthas

Language: In Hindi and Maithili with English subtitles

Production/Distribution: Andaaz Production, Intervention Press

The Ascetic Eye

In Madhubani, people struggle against difficult circumstances to eke out a living. Many have taken to painting to survive. They paint the traditional motives on paper (formerly, they were painted on cow dung textured walls of huts and closely associated with ritual). These paintings are then sold in markets in India and abroad. While many painters repeat certain traditional motives, other artists boldly expand the repertoire to include contemporary themes. This film is about these painters, their circumstances, their inspirations and their works. The film grows to completion by a criss-crossing of narratives stitched together by sights and songs of the milieu that gives birth to these artists. The central line of the film is the khobbar ritual in which a newly-married couple spends three days and nights in the painted Khobbar Ghar before they may consummate their marriage. This vigil over desire provides the film with a mysterious energy.