Art was always meant to bring people together, except this year when we were not allowed to assemble. Even as news of cancellations of festivals from across the world started pouring in, we decided that it was imperative to keep the spirit of Gender Bender alive, because we have always held that art is at the crux of bringing positive change and increased empathy in our lives.
We received nearly 200 applications and it was the quality, passion and conviction in the applications that made us take a unanimous decision (along with the Jury members) to award five additional grants this year, making it 15 instead of the usual 10 grants.
Gender Bender 2020 is not an online festival, we have therefore asked our grantees to create work when better conditions prevail. What will be on display is the effort and the work-in-progress versions of their creation. The commitment of these individuals to continue creating art in these testing times is the only validation we seek.