Bagmati River Project

by Toby Smith

Alberto Rey was approached to consider doing a  project about the Bagmati River that flows though the middle of Kathmandu, Nepal.

The Bagmati is the most sacred river in Nepal and yet it is also the most polluted. Alberto was excited about starting a new environmental project in Asia and about working with a region with several UNESCO heritage sites and a community with a rich cultural heritage. After initial discussions with professionals, museum staff and community members in Kathmandu, it was clear that there was a great deal of interest in having me starting the new project investigating the Bagmati River. Alberto was granted a residency at the Kathmandu Contemporary Arts Center a few months later, and my research began in earnest. Jason Dilworth, Alberto’s colleague and socially-conscious graphic designer, joined the venture early in 2016. His work has been integral to the project’s success. During our first trip to Kathmandu in March of 2016, we were able to strengthen past that were made over the internet while also enlarging our network of individuals and groups committed to improving conditions in the Kathmandu Valley.