Shashwati Talukdar grew up in India where her engagement with theatre and sculpture led to filmmaking, and a Masters degree from the AJ Kidwai Mass Communication Research Center in Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi. She developed an interest in American Avant-Garde film and eventually got an MFA in Film and Media Arts from Temple University, Philadelphia (1999). Her work covers a wide range of forms, including documentary, narrative and experimental. Her work has shown at venues including the Margaret Mead Festival, Berlin, Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia, Kiasma Museum of Art and the Whitney Biennial. She has been supported by entities including the Asian Cine Fund in Busan, the Jerome Foundation, New York State Council on the Arts among others. She just finished a feature length documentary, 'Please Don't Beat Me, Sir!' and is making a film about mural paintings of Garhwal, a project supported by the India Foundation for the Arts.