Tag Archives: Tagore

Tagore in conversation with Einstein

This conversation was the element of departure for Ansuman Biswas performance in Berlin.
Rabindranath Tagore met Albert Einstein on July 14, 1930, in his home in Kaputh, on the outskirts of Berlin.

Excerpt from Conversations And Interviews, by Rabindranath Tagore, Rupa 2006.

EINSTEIN: Do you believe in the Divine as isolated from the world?

TAGORE: Not isolated. The infinite personality of Man comprehends the Universe. There cannot be anything that cannot be subsumed by the human personality, and this proves that the Truth of the Universe is human Truth.

I have taken a scientific fact to explain this — Matter is composed of protons and electrons, with gaps between them; but matter may seem to be solid. Similarly humanity is composed of individuals, yet they have their interconnection of human relationship, which gives living unity to man’s world. The entire universe is linked up with us in a similar manner, it is a human universe. I have pursued this thought through art, literature and the religious consciousness of man.

EINSTEIN: There are two different conceptions about the nature of the universe: (1) The world as a unity dependent on humanity. (2) The world as a reality independent of the human factor.

TAGORE: When our universe is in harmony with Man, the eternal, we know it as Truth, we feel it as beauty.

EINSTEIN: This is the purely human conception of the universe.

TAGORE: There can be no other conception. This world is a human world — the scientific view of it is also that of the scientific man. There is some standard of reason and enjoyment which gives it Truth, the standard of the Eternal Man whose experiences are through our experiences.

EINSTEIN: This is a realization of the human entity.

TAGORE: Yes, one eternal entity. We have to realize it through our emotions and activities. We realized the Supreme Man who has no individual limitations through our limitations. Science is concerned with that which is not confined to individuals; it is the impersonal human world of Truths. Religion realizes these Truths and links them up with our deeper needs; our individual consciousness of Truth gains universal significance. Religion applies values to Truth, and we know this Truth as good through our own harmony with it.

EINSTEIN: Truth, then, or Beauty is not independent of Man?


EINSTEIN: If there would be no human beings any more, the Apollo of Belvedere would no longer be beautiful.


EINSTEIN: I agree with regard to this conception of Beauty, but not with regard to Truth.

TAGORE: Why not? Truth is realized through man.

Ansuman Biswas and Magda Meyer

Ansuman Biswas and Magda Meyer, NGBK, Berlin

RABINDRANATH TAGORE a 1961 Documentary by Satyajit Ray

Rabindranath Tagore
Script. commentary & Direction: Satyajit Ray
1961, India. Documentary, 54 min, B/W
Producer: Films Division, Govt. of India

Cinematography: Soumendu Roy
Editing: Dulal Dutta
Art Direction: Bansi Chandragupta
Music: Jyotirindra Moitra

Raya Chatterjee, Sovanlal Ganguli, Smaran Ghosal, Purnendu Mukherjee, Kallol Bose, Subir Bose, Phani Nan, Norman Ellis

Read more:  http://www.satyajitray.org/films/tagore.htm

Photos from workshop moments in Berlin by Carla Cruz

This is the collection of photos of the various events held for the fourth workshop in Berlin. Friday at NGBK; Saturday at Alice Creischer and Andreas Siekmannan’s Studio and again in the NGBK in the evening

Anna Boghiguian's drawing

Anna Boghiguian’s drawing, NGBK Berlin

Otolith Group mural detail

Otolith Group mural detail, NGBK Berlin

Otolith Group mural

Otolith Group mural, NGBK Berlin

Elzbieta Walter: Public Talk

Elzbieta Walter public talk

Elzbieta Walter

Audience, NGBK

Audience, NGBK

Elzbieta Walter

Elzbieta Walter

A German translation of Tagore from 1918, brought by a member of the audience

A German translation of Tagore from 1918, brought by a member of the audience

workshop berlin

workshop at Alice Creischer and Andreas Siekmann’s studio



workshop at Alice Creischer and Andreas Siekmann’s studio



NGBK, Andrea Phillips, Grant Watson and Elke Falat

NGBK, Andrea Phillips, Grant Watson and Elke Falat

Anshuman Biswas and Magda Mayas: Parentheses on Truth, Beauty and Humanity; a live event based on the conversations between Einstein and Tagore with took place at Einstein’s house near Berlin in 1930.

Anshuman Biswas and Magda Meyer

Anshuman Biswas and Magda Mayas

NGBK audience

NGBK audience

Anshuman Dasgupta: Translating Tagore: the problems and possibilities of attending Tagore from another language and culture

Anshuman Dasgupta and Sanchayan Ghosh

Anshuman Dasgupta and Sanchayan Ghosh

Adrian Rifkin: Tagore seen seated: some others standing, a short speculation in composing the past-imperfect of the ‘post-colonial’

adrian rifkin

Adrian Rifkin

Shanay Jhaveri talks about Tagore and Victoria Ocampo’s relationship

Shanay Jhaveri talks about Tagore and Victoria Ocampo’s relationship, his visit to Argentina and the famous chair he took all the way back home. Seated on this chair Tagore read and ‘understood’ Baudelaire’s poetry.


Shanay Jhaveri talks about Rabindranath Tagore at Boulogne Billancourt

Shanay Jhaveri talks about Rabindranath Tagore at Boulogne Billancourt, Albert Khan’s Garden film: Camille Sauvageot and Roger Dumas, 1921. Iniva November 2013. First workshop.

See the original footage

Natasha Ginwala talks about Rabindranath Tagore’s Play, the Post Office

Korczak (film 1990: directed by Wajda Wojtek Pszoniak as Korczak with the children of the ghetto.

Korczak (film 1990: directed by Wajda Wojtek Pszoniak as Korczak with the children of the ghetto. The Tagore Centre Uk 1996

Read the play here

Ginwala talks about the translations of The Post Office in Poland. Tagore, however, was never in Poland. The reception of his play is beyond him as figure. The Post Office was read as an anti-Fascist narrative. Janusz Korczak making the play with orphan children from the Jewish Ghetto in Warsaw during the second worlds war. Later made into a film by Andrzej Wajda. Implication of death through the script becomes manifest in the film.

Kodwo Eshun reads Tagore’s Japan Lecture

Excerpt of the 1916 Japan a Lecture, Delivered for the Students of the Private Colleges of Tokyo and the Members of the Indo-Japanese Association, at the Keio Gijuku University.

At first, I had my doubts. I thought that I might not be able to see Japan, as she is herself, but should have to be content to see the Japan that takes an acrobatic pride in violently appearing as something else. On my first arrival in this country, when I looked out from the balcony of a house on the hillside, the town of Kobe,—that huge mass of corrugated iron roofs,—appeared to me like a dragon, with glistening scales, basking in the sun, after having devoured a large slice of the living flesh of the earth. This dragon did not belong to the mythology of the past, but of the present; and with its iron mask it tried to look real to the children of the age,—real as the majestic rocks on the shore, as the epic rhythm of the sea-waves.

Read the full text

Kodwo Eshun reads a 1916 lecture from Tagore. Evocation of the roots of Kobe as Dragon. In the letter the traveler the person that brings a specific optic. Kodwo Eshun talks about reception, misgivings and curiosity.