BASU FOUNDATION FOR THE ARTS
Kolkata, West Bengal – 2011:
The Basu Foundation for the Arts (BFA) is a not-for-profit organisation that encourages, promotes and supports innovative work in the field of the visual and performing arts. Bringing together a spectrum of experts in areas of curatorial practice, institutional building, and community art, BFA is a platform for critical reflection, exchange of ideas and constructive debate.
The Foundation is based in the family residence next to ‘Basubati’, the palatial house of eminent philanthropists, Nandalal and Pashupati Nath Bose, that has a history of art patronage spanning over a century. In 1878, a substantial fund was created at the Bose family estate to give patronage to artists and artisans that were invited to work and live on the palace grounds. Basubati has seen the likes of Kalighat Patua Painters, Bengal School Oil Painters, Jatra theatre artists, and a range of prominent Indian classical musicians and singers who regularly performed here. The palace became a bustling centre for poets, artists, philosophers and intellectuals. As funds dwindled due to money being diverted to the Indian National Movement, the 1940s, however, saw an end to this patronage.
In 2011, Abhishek Basu, great great grandson of Nandalal Bose, and Founder and Director of Calcutta Arts Club, invited french artist, Prune Nourry to Basubati as its first international resident and revived the International Residency Program of BFA, (formerly- the Calcutta Arts Club Residency Program).
Since then, BFA has received several international & Indian artists, recommended by Foundations/Museums/Embassies/Cultural Institutions into its residency program. The residency spans 3-6 weeks in which the artist is required to produce a body of artwork that is exhibited at the end of the residency period. BFA also awards a residency to a selected artist at the Arte Laguna Prize, Venice.
Text Courtesy : Space118
Image Courtesy : Basu Foundation for the Arts