Pocko Gallery wanted to mark the UK India Year of Culture, a year-long collaboration between cultural organisations in the UK (including the Arts Council and the British Film Institute) and the Government of India, which aims to foster cultural exchange between the two countries.
An official project for the year of culture fell through but the research process introduced us to Indian curators and artists. A few months of research into the female photography scene in India introduced us to some incredible photographers, starting with Ishita Singh, a young and talented artist pushing boundaries.
Through Singh, we discovered the work of some of her contemporaries who were also doing conceptual and thought-provoking work. This led to an exploration of the art scene in India, narrowing in on a theme for the show and looking for bodies of work with a common theme.
We approached New York based gallery sepiaEYE who kindly recommended and lended work from two of its artists; Annu Palakunnathu Matthew and Pamela Singh. Unlike the other selected artists, Matthew & Singh are established photographers who have worked in the industry for many years now. It was important for us to feature young and upcoming artists amongst better known works to ensure we were including as many voices as possible.
“It’s a small selection of work, but far reaching in the people and lives it represents. Being a woman in India is not a singular experience but a spectrum and this is evident in the work featured in Mirror.”
Rather than being passive subjects and surveyors of photography, these artists engage issues of gender identity and politics through the medium photography.