Mr. Abhay B. Ghiara
Specialization: Performance Art
Home institution in US: DeVry University, Fremont, California
Host Institution in India: St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai, Maharashtra     
Start date/Month in India: November 2012
Duration of grant: 4 months

Brief Bio:
Mr. Abhay Ghiara grew up in India speaking five languages and accompanying his father, an economist, on field-trips across India. He studied economics and yoga at University of Mumbai, Maharashtra where he also founded a popular mime group, and went on to study at Northwestern University, Illinois before becoming a professor at DeVry University in California. He has taught at Northwestern University and the Goat Island Performance Summer Schools at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Bristol, U.K.

Mr. Ghiara creates performance-lectures in 26 parts on topics related to culture, economics and society. Each piece has elements of writing, visuals and performance. The seemingly unrelated parts fit together to create a gestalt, answering questions and raising new ones. He has presented his work at wide-ranging venues from the Art Institute of Chicago and the Performance Studies International Conference in London to the California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco. His work has been published in the Journal of Curriculum and Pedagogy and Performance Research.

Mr. Ghiara will be collecting materials for a 26-part performance-lecture on Mahatma Gandhi. The research project, “26 Brief Glimpses of Gandhi: Towards a Sequel to the London Performance-Lecture (Performance Studies International Conference),” will take him to some of Gandhi’s ashrams, to actors who have played Gandhi in movies and in plays, to people who have been influenced by Gandhi, and to artistic communities consciously or unconsciously influenced by his ideas. Mahatma Gandhi influenced every aspect of Indian society in subtle ways, and Mr. Ghiara’s research project aims at capturing the embedded nature of Gandhi’s legacy in everyday life in India, from its art and economics to its Zeitgeist.