From the Ganga to the Tay

Bashabi Fraser was born in West Bengal, India, and has since experienced the diversity of her changing worlds; spending her childhood in London, having her secondary schooling in the Himalayas and her higher education in Kolkata and Edinburgh. Bashabi explores the links between her two countries in her writing and research, combining the pragmatism of the west with the grace of the east in a distinctive voice. She has been anthologised widely and her publications include Bengal Partition Stories: An Unclosed Chapter, The Meeting of Two Minds: the Geddes–Tagore Letters and Tartan & Turban. Bashabi has known the land of the Ganga (Ganges) since birth, and grew up with stories of Ganga’s many distributaries such as the mighty Padma and the historic Hugli. She has played on the banks of the Thames, travelled along the romantic Tay and settled in the city watered by the Forth and the Water of Leith. The rivers reflect her own life as a continuous journey, embodying a historic dialogue that can be traced through time. With a phd in English, Bashabi is a lecturer in English and Creative Writing at Napier University and an Honorary Fellow at Edinburgh University. She lives in Edinburgh with her husband and has one daughter who considers Edinburgh ‘home’. Bashabi’s current research project is on Scots in India for a book of life stories.

KENNY MUNRO is an artist whose diversity is expressed through sculpture, photography and film. He was born in Edinburgh and graduated in sculpture at Edinburgh College of Art with post-graduate training at Oslo University and the Royal College of Art, London. He has worked on the Stones of Scotland project at Regent Road Park, Edinburgh with George Wyllie MBE and Lesley-May Miller and also created a video projection called Language on Stone with Edward O’Donnelly and poet Alastair Reid at St Andrews. Inspired by the international work of Sir Patrick Geddes, he undertook an art science project on the Murray River, Australia with a bursary from The Friends of the Royal Scottish Academy. From 2002 he has worked with artists in Kolkata, including bringing a Bengal boat to Scotland in 2004 and more recently two Indian rickshaws for a tour round Scottish schools.

He is currently working on Plankton Power, a project using marine plankton as an environmental barometer. Kenny lives in Fife and has a workshop in East Lothian.