Fragments of a wedding diary- photo installation- 33 photos- digital image on archival paper.
These are the fragment visuals printed from found wedding photographs and negatives. Here the wedding process is deliberately focused at certain areas as well as details (only). The memory of the rest of the wedding process, is only suggested. Some of the photos are hand-coloured. The emphasis is upon the ‘human touch’ and not the detailed, descriptive wedding. Touch is the essence of a wedlock. These photos themselves look like a ‘ritual’ around the touch and feel. I have concentrated on the ‘studio photography’ and ‘wedding photography’ practiced in my city (Bangalore) since 1960’s. When I started looking for photographs with an emphasis upon the common man’s desire to get photographed, my search began with the oldest photo studios in Bangalore. Most of the negatives for these photographs were found in the studios of Bangalore city, wherein I have lived all through. All these documentary visuals are about South Indian marriages. They imbibe a chronology that range between black and white pictures of the 1960s and the coloured technique of the 70s and 80s. The images from the 90 are digital photographs. The technique of mixing and overlapping of images is a part and parcel of the digital age. Most of them have Indian couple standing with a backdrop of, say, Naigara falls/ Switzerland mountain ranges. They are digitally created, to cater to the need of the common man. My readymade photographs fragment them, associate
They construe an amazing as well as amusing mundane drama in which the common people become the lead actors during their auspicious wedding day. The marriage photographs or/and the marriage videos form the document of a specific culture people. It is also a document of what they essentially are not in their true life! The photographs that capture these moments are the most memorable in the couple’s life, for several reasons. Currently, most marriages are documented through both still colorful photos and video films.
The marriage photographs have a special cultural position in a metropolitan city like Bangalore. It is a historic belief that the art of photography traversed from quantitatively fewer (in the 1960’s) black and white monochromes –through multicolored, quantitatively more (1990’s) –to video films of every marriage ritual. A specific mode of framing and picturisation of the occasion has been set within the working methodology of every marriage photographer. It is so because marriage photographers have their own definition of what they mean by the term ‘creativity’ and are very particular in the usage of what they mean by special effects. Such effects are more formal than theoretic. It is closer to the spirit of what we understand by the terms kitsch, cliche and pastiche.