“We are thrilled to join forces with the Peabody Museum,” Shand added, “as their vision and ambition inspires our own work.”
The Tannery Series’ mission, as she described it, is to search for writers whose work “expands our sense of the world,” adding that the museum also “embodies that innate curiosity, that desire for exploration.”
By collaborating, the Tannery Series and the museum hope to do even more than create a festive evening that enhances the themes of the museum’s exhibits. Their higher purpose, according to the founders, is to create a multidimensional, dynamic environment that enables attendees to find connections between art, literature and their own lives.
Kapur and Shand founded The Tannery Reading Series in 2010, with the intent of highlighting literature that “confronts the world in essential and curious ways.”
“We usually get between 80 and 120 people to attend our literary events,” Kapur said. Although the women take their work seriously, their greater intention is to present serious literature in an accessible, enjoyable and casual format that makes for an overall fun experience.
Working with the Peabody Essex Museum officials, Kapur and Shand have framed the literary entertainment for all three events by assembling groups of authors who they expect will not only work well together, but also complement the works of art on display.
The first event, “Hot Fusion: Explosive, Global India,” will feature readings by three of the hottest Indian-American writers, said Kapur, including Suketu Mehta, the author of “Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found,” Rajesh Parameswaran, author of “I Am an Executioner: Love Stories,” and Rishi Reddi, who wrote “Karma and Other Stories.” To help set the mood, the atrium will be transformed into a replica of Bombay’s Samovar Café, complete with Indian street food, Indian music and a cash bar.
At the time, the museum will be hosting a special exhibit, “Midnight to the Boom: Painting in India after Independence.”