Photography Residency'05

01/12/2005
In the previous century, photography helped shape art; in the current one, it has begun...
Photography Residency
Venue: 
KHOJ Studios, New Delhi
Date: 
Wednesday, 30 November 2005

In the previous century, photography helped shape art; in the current one, it has begun to dominate it. Not only are major international museums and galleries mounting blockbuster exhibitions, but art photographers are also being celebrated as contemporary masters. Both India and South Asia have strong traditions of documentary/reportage photography and an increasing number of visual artists are choosing to work exclusively with this medium while others adopt a more interdisciplinary approach.The KHOJ PHOTOGRAPHY RESIDENCY sought to interrogate the "digital-ness" of photography as a medium and all that implies -- interaction and collaboration, manipulation and realism, and authenticity and authority by bringing together photographers / artists from the various sub genres of the medium such as documentary / reportage / portraiture / landscape / journalism / art photography etc.

Photography Residency Nov-Dec 2005

In the previous century, photography helped shape art; in the current one, it has begun to dominate it. Not only are major international museums and galleries mounting blockbuster exhibitions, but art photographers are also being celebrated as contemporary masters. Both India and South Asia have strong traditions of documentary/reportage photography, and more and more visual artists are now choosing to work exclusively with this medium, while others have a more interdisciplinary approach.

The KHOJ PHOTOGRAPHY RESIDENCY sough to interrogate the "digital-ness" of photography as a medium and all that implies -- interaction and collaboration, manipulation and realism, and authenticity and authority by bringing together photographers / artists from the various sub genres of the medium such as documentary / reportage / portraiture / landscape / journalism / art photography etc.


Arash Hanaei & Abrie Fourie

'I Play with Gods, Gods Play with Me' + 'Where-We-R (Sikh in Delhi)'

Arash represents the young generation of photographers from the Arab world to have come out Post 2000. Arash had a more 'artistic' outtake at photography. Using alternate means to represent his personal history and culture. The efforts to pursue a aesthetic which was not necessarily implicitly related to political/cultural scenarios of Iran in a quasi-documentative mode... Arash amply showed the aspiration among young Arab photographers to employ a more creatively radical approach in their modes of ideations and Representation than to bend down to a cultural burden which popular foreign cultural notions would have them carry.

As a photographer Abrie displayed a highly intuitive + intentionally noncerebral approach. Talented to his fingernails his photographing technique itself showed prodigious skill in extracting images without looking through the viewfinder of the camera.... or toggling between different camera models and handy tripod extensions from situation to situation.

Abrie and Arash had one projection of a slideshow of all their works running on the exterior of the building. A first at KHOJ Studios. They also commissioned a hint of absurd into the processings by putting a new signage on the exterior which used the Graphic color element of the City Police with signage information on it. Their second and most remarkable work was the publication that they brought out. Using the most popular and cheapest form of offset reproduction available in the city they printed a small booklet, cheaply bound, with a everyday street print grungy aesthetic. The curation of the photographs within amply displayed the distinct visual vocabularies that both were toying with. Abrie continued with his knack for capturing the most absurdly photogenic visuals and Arash displayed a series, which displayed the different god, and religious icons which auto-rickshaw drivers used to decorate and sanctify their dash board. Bringing out the various culturally derived manifestations of easily available religious stickers it displayed a variety of personalizations of a public service automobile.


Dhanushka Amarasekhara

'Silence ... a Journey ...'

Dhanushka's work largely revolved around capturing of the human body in choreographed positions in black and white. Dhanushka's presentation was an immaculately precise presentation of selected images from her sojourn in India. The entire studio had been clinically lit to bounce light of the ceiling to enforce a non-invasive glow, which greatly accentuated her ambitiously tranquillising compositions of Buddhist scenarios of India. While appearing idealised in its scope, the overall prevailing quiet and solitude of the compositions rendered such apprehensions superfluous.


Gauri Gill

"Nizammudin at Night"

Gauri's intimately stark renditions of the area of Nizamuddin shot during the night time gave a beautiful gray-scale representation of the winter vibe in one of oldest areas of Delhi. Placed randomly across the still wet grey walls of the rooms the photos almost enacted a watery washed out collage rendering a psycho active tapestry of solitary socio-cultural glimpses of Nizamuddin. Charged with a prolific eye for the most visually self contained images from the vicinity Gauri's entire photo 'installation' assumed a appearance a multi windowed black box with windows into a different space and time...very connected to the immediate area and yet completely ethereal in it's entirety.


Sanjida Shahed

'Made in Old Delhi'

Sanjida displayed her didtally printed A3 sized in the dimly and somewhat accidentally lit courtyard. The works were her selections from Old Delhi , strategically edited to alter certain elements of the protagonist elements to bring out a errie output of an everyday scenario. For someone of her demeanor it marked a distinct shift from a very safe gallery oriented reproduction of photographs. The residency gave her an opportunity to take stock of the body of work she had composed till then and channelise avenues of expressions and representations which would be specific to her personal inferences.


Sheba Chachhi

'Tales from the City'

Sheba Chachhi's past body of work ranging from the near journalistic activist era to the semi documentative extracts of the ascetic women to the more immediate works using ambitious methods of mediatic installations made her a iconic presence within the residency context.

Sheba as planned displayed four objects, which acted on photographs. The basic apparatus bridged the ergonomic line between a bioscope and a television set. Operating on a two electrically rotating motored coils the "objects" that resembled mini television sets through the two vertically parallel coils literally looped photo sequences. The sequences themselves were superimposed photographs printed in transparent plastic superimposing angular latitudinal satellite of the city with images of people living on the fringes of the urban metropolis.