#4

It all began for me with a large format 4x5 view camera: a mammoth of a machine, a slow beast. I think affectionately of the familiar 8 pounds tugging at my shoulder as I carried the camera around, for it slowed down every step I took, every set I planned, and every photograph I made.  The long-drawn-out process fed my brain like nothing else. Suddenly, thoughts were deeper and artworks increased in complexity.

 

The most instrumental strategy this lengthy method inspired me to take on was to match the extended time spent planning a photograph before taking it, with the time spent thinking about it after its completion. It is this reflection that led me to become captivated by the concept of subjectivity. I realized that it is this quality in art that draws me to it. Works that are able to spark widely varied emotions and meanings in their viewers often enamor me. The process of the artwork is elongated to never-ending for the thoughts about it, never stop.

 

And so I set out to own the subjectivity in my art and use it as a tool to intensify my photographs. My body of pictures cannot be understood without knowing that I am a person of two very different worlds. The first is a culturally saturated home, in India, and the second is a small part of the vibrant visual art world of the United States of America. Using this as a base for stimulating subjectivity in my work, I often ask my family in India what they think of these images and I am dealt with heavy words like burka, female oppression and rape. But my fellow artists in Boston respond to the material aspect of it all, appreciating the transparency and folds in the fabric and glint in the subject’s eye. I believe the photographs to be inseparable from these interpretations and each supposition that every different audience brings to it.