Kismuth Books is a project of Dipika Kohli.
Kohli’s written and visual work, as well as curations, juxtapose people, place, and found imagery in ‘minitheaters’ as well as digital ‘zines’ like S P A C E.
She engages with media at hand, wherever she is, to build something out of what’s available in that moment, with that feeling. A bricolage artist at heart, she thus invites the new to enter any frame: when mixed, there is invitation for those who are participant to connect, reconnect, and revisit their idea of such fixed thinking as ‘this is where this is taking us’ and ‘here is what we know.’ Do we know anything, for sure? Ask the quantum physicists. Ask N. Bohr: ‘How wonderful that we have met with a paradox; now we have some hope of making progress.’ dipikakohli.com
- Reality & Trust (2021)
- End of the Rainbow (2020)
- Finnmark (2020)
- Nostalgia Ca Phe (2020)
- Step a Little Closer (2020)
- Breakfast in Cambodia (2016)
- Kismuth Book I: Kanishka (2015)
- Kismuth Book IV: Flight of Pisces (2013)
- Kismuth Book III: The Dive (2012)
- Kismuth Book II: The Elopement (2012).. (Listen to a live interview on NPR)
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Kismuth began as a four-volume series. It was about sharing real stories based on real life, and not catering or pandering to any mainstream audiences. This is a very long backstory–but, to be really honest, it wasn’t for me to try to contort my story to fit some publisher’s ‘idea’ about what ‘good’ is. Those people are biased. They think a perspective that has been taught to us, instead of one that has been lived by us, is more ‘acceptable.’ And let’s face it: publishers are in the business of making money. Kismuth? Kismuth just wants to tell it straight up, honestly, from the heart. The original blog here was a very basic tumblr. I still remember when Is tarted it, and when I typed what Kismuth was, to me.
Kismuth Books. Experiments in writing from the heart.
So these are the stories that opened the way towards making Kismuth. Four stories, each of them based on real life experiences, make up this memoir set. Themes for the series are the four books based on the big topics: love, life, loss and hope.
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Articles & Columns
- Column ‘Kismuth & The Way’, Saathee Magazine, Charlotte NC 2019
- Kanishka, published as a serial, Preetlari Magazine, Chandigarh 2016
- ‘The Death of Childhood,’ Dying Matters, UK 2015
- ‘The Truth of It’, published in Sisters Born, Sisters Found and the Bay Area’s Noe Valley Voice, 2014
- ‘Understanding Regional Identity in the Face of Rapid Development,’ ThisBigCity.com 2014
- ‘The Village Report’, Northwest Asian Weekly, Seattle 2013-2014
- ‘Just Being Honest’, Saathee Magazine, Charlotte NC 2013-2014
- ‘Are we allowed to be creative?’ ProcessedIdentity.com, Ottawa 2011
- ‘Ireland in the World Cup’, as reported from Tokyo for Skibbereen’s Southern Star, 2002
- ‘Ireland’s Oldest Man,’ feature, Cork Evening Echo, Cork 2002
- ‘Tech Time for Universities,’ feature, J@Pan Inc, Tokyo 2002
- Prior to 2002, Kohli’s freelance pieces had appeared in: AbroadView, Irish Times, Irish American Post, India Today Plus, J@pan Inc., Metro Eireann, The Raleigh News & Observer, Rediff.com, Sikkim Observer, Spectator Magazine, StudentTraveler, Southern Star, Tokyo Notice Board, Transitions Abroad, and her hometown of Durham NC’s Urban Hiker: Stories in First Person
Residencies & Awards
- Atelier S P A C E zinemaking residency, Ventspils Writers’ and Translators’ House, Ventspils, Latvia 2020 (postponed)
- Atelier S P A C E zinemaking residency, Kulttuurikeskus Vanha Paukku, Lapua, Finland, 2020 (postponed)
- Writing residency, AIR Frosterus Kärsämäki Finland 2018
- Writing residency, Preet Nagar Punjab India 2015
- Japan Foundation grant for the writing and photography collection, Japanese Lines, 1995 & 1996