Last year I was a part of an interdisciplinary project ‘Letter to The City' that sheds light on the challenges faced by girls and women living and working in the cities of Bangladesh. I was one of the 30 artists who illustrated over 100 letters asked by the organizer about how girls and women experience their cities: do they own their cities? Do they feel safe and liberated in their cities? What do they anticipate from their cities? Women living in different cities in Bangladesh wrote about everything from micro-aggressions against women to fear of being raped. Though they want to love and want to feel safe walking city streets, their writing echoes the insecurity of living there as a woman.
After working on this project, I wanted to share my feelings and experiences through animation and sculptural form. The black rectangular interlocking modular sculpture that I am currently making represents the brutalist architecture of a dense city like Dhaka (the capital of Bangladesh). A bundle of black yarn connected to the sculpture appears to be falling from underneath it like the tangled electric cable commonly seen in Dhaka streets. A video portraying a synopsis of those letters and my perspective as a woman living in Dhaka is projected onto the surfaces of the sculpture. The video includes the experience of a woman (a red figure) moving on a bus and being watched by men and having trouble walking on the streets in the evening. My goal is to create an audio-visual experience of Dhaka streets and the struggles of women trying to navigate them safely.