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MA in Art Practices


Pathway : Creative Documentary Practice

"My road is towards the creation of a fresh perception of the world. Thus I decipher in a new way the world unknown to you." - Dziga Vertov

Bidar: Ways of seeing and showing – a place, community, stories


The first film ever made was a documentary. Since then, the practice of filmmaking, and of documentary film in particular, has undergone a huge transformation. New technologies have made way for different stories and unheard voices to emerge and together they have evolved into a variety of forms, styles and genres that allow for highly individualised ways of seeing and showing reality. This forms the crux of the Creative Documentary Practice pathway.
We believe in cross disciplinary research processes as a means of consciously engaging with social, political and cultural contexts. We see documentary film as a creative practice that continually questions the nature of the “real”. We encourage the telling of stories that link the personal with the political, the backyard with the world.

Core Values

  • Body text Exploring personal vision and position
  • Ethical and responsible image-making
  • Questioning the notion of truth & reality
  • Reflecting upon the human condition

Course Structure

  • Disciplinary Studies
  • Trans-disciplinary Projects
  • Theory and Understanding Units
  • Practice
  • Self-Directed Inquiry/Research
  • Knowledge Enhancement (Ability or Skills)

Students participated in Creative Interruptions: An artist residency and exhibition in Preet Nagar, Punjab

Learning Approach

Learning at the master’s level will be through course work and self-initiated work. The taught units will expose students to the history and practice of documentary film in the world and in India, through screenings and readings. As they hone their filmmaking craft, they will be encouraged to develop a critical approach to their own work and that of others. They will have the opportunity to enrich and expand their practice by engaging with the rich variety of allied disciplines taught in Srishti Manipal. Facilitators and mentors will guide students through an independent learning process.


  • Using camera/sound as a tool of enquiry
  • Employing a range of research methods in generating insights and formulating positions
  • Understanding subjectivity and objectivity
  • Understanding and constructing narrative towards impactful storytelling
  • Using the possibilities of the filmmaking process in making decisions in planned and unplanned situations
  • Experimenting with technique, form and material
  • Conceptualising and producing a short documentary film independently


  • Undertake the making of independent or commissioned documentary films.
  • Work in any organisation engaged in audio-visual production.
  • Work as media consultant for national and international agencies.
  • Pursue doctoral research in film.


For more information about this program, contact Swati Dandekar at

Disciplinary Intersections

This postgraduate program in creative documentary intersects with the following disciplines:

Research and Collaboration

Students of film courses have the opportunity to engage with and draw upon, the knowledge resources of other schools as well as the labs and centres at Srishti Manipal.


View Eligibility for Admission, Fee Schedule, Application Form & Other information for this Program >>