Global Dialogue Amongst Drivers
In the summer of 2007 I traveled to India, where I experimented with screening both short films, ‘NY Taxi Drivers’ and ‘Street Smarts’ to auto rickshaw drivers and taxi drivers in New Delhi. Auto rickshaws have three wheels and are open on both sides. They throng the streets of New Delhi and are the common man’s taxi. In New Delhi, Taxis are used by people of a higher class segment.
I traveled to spots where the auto rickshaws would be waiting for passengers or drinking tea and chatting. I screened the shorts on my laptop and then filmed their reactions and responses to the piece. The open and easily accessible auto rickshaws itself became the venue for screening.
Language and similar cultural identities helped the Indian cab drivers understand the New York cabbies. They watched the shorts , which led to some interesting discussions, questions and comments from their side.
I then filmed and documented this virtual dialogue between cab drivers in New York and New Delhi. The aim was to use the shorts as a spark plug for more discussions around the same issues.
This was a successful endeavor and sparked some interesting observations about global terrorism and the situation of working class people.
An interesting experience occurred after flying back to New York. I took a cab home from La Guardia and on talking to the Muslim cab driver from India found he had also seen my taxi films on youtube. These experiences of global mapping, traffic and technology gave the impetus to ‘The Taxi Takes on Terror.’
Back to Previous Work with taxi Drivers