By SOHAIL HASHMI: Navina Jafa’s Performing Heritage: Art of exhibit walks is one of few books dealing with the process of conducting heritage and culture walks in India. But the subject is a rapidly expanding and lucrative field that – until now – has not been very well understood.
Jafa is a student of history, a trained classical dancer, a conservationist and a heritage activist. Normally those with their fingers in too many pies end up mixing their metaphors, but this author specialises in inventing her own – the title of this book, for instance. Performing artists, performing acrobats, performing monkeys are terms that all of us are familiar with, but the concept of heritage that performs is more unusual.
The text exists simultaneously on two planes. The first locates heritage walks in the realm of public performances, distinguishing them from exhibitions in controlled environments like museums and art galleries. The second is more illustrative, and is presented as an explanation of the arguments being advanced across the first strand. Continue reading Performing Heritage