Monday, Oct 24, 7 pm
Broadcast 002: Akshay Sardana
The second installation for the Satellite Broadcast Series is created by Akshay Sardana, with his installation “Humpback to the Future: A Cameltopia Experience”.
Post Event Thanks from Akshay———
Thanks to all of you who came by last night! It was indeed a camel rodeo fringe kiddie party for adults. To all of you who rode the camel; I applaud your courage and bravery. If you got injured – stop crying and man up (also buy some insurance next time). Big Big thanks goes out to James Clar for the opportunity and putting this together, The entire Traffic Family for all their love and support, Dj Solo for the dope camel cuts, Yannik for the dancing camel visuals, Raad Rock for the Humpback to the Future t-shirt design, Gus for the camel milk ice cream, Pooja for coming up with the Cameltopia name, Sharma the Camel for not spitting and generally behaving, Ubik for coming second with 36 seconds on level 4, Flying elephant for the bean bag sand dune and everything else, Camelicious for the camel milk to make the yummy “White Emiraties”, Hallmark for the discount on the lesbian camel doll, Everyone else who helped carry, print, deliver, pile, dig, steal buckets of sand from the desert, sweep, and document the event. Expect lots of photos and embarrassing footage soon.
Humpback to the Future: A Cameltopia Experience! Camel Rodeo competition, Bean Bag Sand Dune, Sharma the Real Camel, Camel Milk boozy drinks, Date flavoured Camel Milk Ice Cream in Green Tea Gourmet Cones, Level 4!, Camel Whips, Camel Cuts and World Music, WOLFPAKiSTAN (now found under the world music section), Dope Dancing Camel and fat man flip book visuals, Three people on the Mechanical Camel – STANDING!, Lots of rope burn, Girls in skirts not afraid to ride the camel (high fives), Blind folded camel riding, Motorbike helmet Camel riding, Nude Camel riding (I told you it got weird), Bean bag diving, Death of a Mechanical Camel, Sponsor Quote: “That is the worst fake camel I have ever seen in my life”, Other sponsor quote “My Camel had fun, she enjoyed eating the camel milk ice cream”, Hip hop and real camels in the same room, Justin Bieber’s haircut, Asking the cultural minister of Abu Dhabi if he knew who Justin Beiber was, The Camel mount Camera, Waiver forms (we’re so official), Allowing drunk people to control the mechanical camel, Mandatory helmets, Making fun of people who wear helmets, Police Escorts, No Serious Injuries, Limited Edition Humpback to the Future T-shirts (hit me up if you want one, we still have a few left), The Majlis Dj Booth, The Perfect Door to Camel Ratio, puking, The Aftermath.
Akshay Sardana is a Dubai-based artist whose work deals with the comedy of globalism. For Broadcast002 he creates a fully immersive experience that features an interactive, robotic camel, camel treats, and all things camel within Satellite.
A wry commentary on the region’s relationship with the camel.
—————————— Q&A with Akshay ——————————
* Who are you and what do you do?
Firstly, I will only give this interview if it also gets published in the Wingdings font. I love that font. I’m Akshay AKA Ak-Che Guevara AKA Cadillackshay AKA Blackshay AKA Aksh-Shia Labeouf AKA Smackshay AKA UBiKshay AKA Akshady AKA Akshake Shackshay AKA Dr.Mr.Dj AKA Anorakshay AKA Arakshay AKA Akshakistan AKA WOLFPAKiSTAN AKA Whoppi Winfrey AKA Eid Mubarakshay AKA AKA-Shay! I’m a man of many faces. In regards to what I do; even though I think that art is a fad, I make art; and that makes me an artist. In short I’m a pseudo-struggling artist. I had my own cooking show but unfortunately that never aired to due ‘creative differences’. I still think that Nude in Food was a good name. And, I was willing to compromise by calling it ‘Swallow’. I digress. We recently launched our own record label; Cabbage Pak Kids Records and I am the co-founder of a critically acclaimed psych-cardio disco rap group; WOLFPAKiSTAN. We are about to embark on our world tour of only ex Spanish Colonies – Tenerife here we come.
* How has your style developed and changed over the years?
Well I think starting with Free T.G.I.F Crayon sketches on acid free paper to producing my own big budget rap videos with exotic bikini clad women riding elephants with fireworks attached to their back says it all. Next Question.
* Explain your installation for Satellite Broadcast 002 ?
I was reading Teen Vogue by the pool and saw a close up of Justin Beiber’s haircut. Being the curious cat that I am, I examined it further and to my surprise realized that it looked exactly like the hump of a camel. This made me want to ride a camel while eating camel milk ice-cream. But I couldn’t do that because Camel Milk Ice-cream didn’t exist and I didn’t now where to find a camel. I also though the camel would feel bad if I rode him while drinking his milk. It was a existential moment. I was then, and am now; Intoxicated.
* What does the piece mean for you ?
I like animals. I don’t like the zoo. It’s mean to keep animals in cages. I think they should all be in Africa. So, after Justin Bieber’s haircut reminded me of camels and how much I love them and how important they are to this region, I made the decision to do a show about camels. Education is the first step. I remember when I first got to the US in 2002 (not so long ago) there were actually people there who asked me if I ride a camel to school? I told them yes! But these were real people asking real questions. I met a kid on my first US tour that, in reference to one of my rap lyrics, asked me what a camel was. I told him it was an acronym for Can’t. Always. Milk. Every. Lion. His response; Oh, like Wu-Tang’s C.R.E.A.M. Kids these days, jeez! Camel’s live all over the world, in jungles, on mountains, in the ocean, and some people haven’t ever seen one before in their life. There is nothing more beautiful than a swimming camel. Some people who live in this region, the desert, where camels are born, haven’t even seen camels. They don’t realize that if the Bedouins didn’t rely so heavily on these beautiful creatures, that this city that they call home would never exist; It would still be a village. These animals used to be judged based on their on strength, and hump size, to see if they were fit enough to carry an entire villages worth of supplies across 3000 miles of dunes with only one water break. Today they are judged only on the length of their eyelashes in camel beauty contests. And still people no nothing about the camel; except for the fact that it has something to do with a crude reference to overexposed crotches. People laugh at the joke, but have they ever seen a foot of a camel? I think not. There are some people, however, that have taken an interest in building relationships with camels. My friend Raad, also a member of WOLFPAKiSTAN, has started a company that makes hats for camels to wear during their beauty contest. I think that’s just swell.
* What is your interest in the Camels ?
I once rode a camel. It was like a horse, but slower and with a hump. I was fascinated by its long history (and long lashes). Did you know that in 1200 BC, the first camel saddles had appeared, and Bactrian camels could be ridden for the first time? Empires were built because of them. It’s just so interesting. My friend once hit me with a camel whip, ever since then I took a stance against camel racing. Even though it is still a huge part of the Bedouin heritage; it really hurts and I think that camel beauty contests are far less painful for the camel. Sometimes I wish I could store water in my hump.
Event supplies and interior provided by Flying Elephant, Dubai
Camel milk provided by Camelicious
The Satellite Broadcast Series are one night only events that feature a site-specific art installation or performance within Satellite – James Clar’s studio space in the Al Serkal gallery district of Dubai.
Satellite Broadcasts give the opportunity to a selected artist or collective to create an engaging experience to the public through an installation or performance. Art covers a broad spectrum of sensory experience. Working outside the confines of the gallery system the artist is free to create an environment that is temporary, fragile, non-object related, auditory, interactive, etc.