forest residency

The Mumbai Forest Residency invites artists, researchers and cultural practitioners to a multidisciplinary residency programme at one of Mumbai’s largest green reserves.

Aarey is today one of the most contested sites in the metropolis being coveted by infrastructure projects eager to cut out portions of its 3000 acres and displace over 10,000 people as part of the city’s urban planning vision.

The forest presently hosts a rich biodiversity with over 222 species of birds, reptiles and mammals and plant life. It has also been home to the local Warli tribe from various parts of the country for over a century. With the present risk of eviction, comes the risk of ending a large chunk of the city’s history.

ArtOxygen believes that the site is of great value in terms of its social, cultural and economic history. The case of Aarey reflects also the current urban transformation of Mumbai that continues to marginalise communities that form an important part of the city’s identity.

We encourage cultural practitioners to work in a space that is undergoing constant transformation, in order to preserve the wealth of stories of those who live there.

Artists who apply will live in the forest and will be expected to work together with villagers residing there. The outcome of the experience will be site-specific projects that become a living archive of the diversity present in the space.

Artist interventions can range from photographic works, video documents, performances, relational pieces, mappings, community works, sculpture and installation. Each project will be exhibited to forest residents and the outside public.

For inquiries, write to us at