The Jambudvipa Association for Indian Arts – JAIA – represents a collective of emerging Asian-Australian artists engaged in the development and presentation of contemporary and classical work in South Asian dance theatre, music and art.
Established under the patronage of the celebrated dancer, choreographer and cultural pioneer, Dr Chandrabhanu OAM and the management mentorship of Ambika Docherty, JAIA is an organisation born of passion for classical art-forms and heritage cultural practice, with an intent to empower current and future generations of artists to explore, develop, engage with and present original works to new audiences across Australia. Inheriting the legacy of Dr Chandrabhanu’s vision for South Asian dance theatre, the members of JAIA are dedicated to best-practice artistic standards and performance technique and seek to create and uphold professionalism in South Asian dance theatre and arts practice.
Nithya Iyer served as the Chair of JAIA and a performer in its ensemble from 2013 – 2016. During this time the ensemble produced three feature-length works with the support of the Victorian Multicultural Commission and Darebin City Council. JAIA’s work continues today with a new generation of performers.
Jambudvīpa (Sanskrit: जम्बुद्वीप) is one of the seven original continents of Earth, as identified in the Puranic texts of Hindu cosmology, and represents the physical terrestrial land. Jambu, as named after the Jambu trees which abound on the land, and Dvipa, meaning Island, this is the only place where humans live, a place where enlightenment can be reached.