Explorations in Digital Imaging
Siddhartha Hall, Max Mueller Bhavan (Goethe Institute)
New Delhi, India
2-14 September, 2000
By the time of the call, I'd actually forgotten entirely about
that conversation at a get-together with filmmakers that we'd
put together at his institution (MMB) almost a year earlier.
However, the opportunity was too intriguing to just respond to
Anita with an "Opps! Let's forget about it just because
I forgot about it!!"
So, I offered to call back in a day or two after drawing responses
from some of the artists we connect with in Delhi, and was more
than delighted to do so the very next day with an "OK"!
Now, anyone and everyone who has ever had to marshal creative
folks and their creative works into a joint endeavour has probably
experienced how hellish this can be, and will appreciate how
it may indeed have proven lucky to us in the end that just a
month remained to put it all together.
No further comments, therefore: The text below derives directly
from the exhibition flyer. Some of the images from the show are
interspersed through this.
Tina Rajan Kashyap
Tina's a mainstream Computer Graphic Artist currently doing
3D and Cel animation mainly for Ad-films, and a lot of other
graphics for the print media. For grounding ~ she's been contributing
cartoons and caricatures for some of Delhi's leading newspapers
since the age of ten, and has managed to dabble over time with
a lot of different media including oils, charcoal, ink, clay
and plaster too. For Tina: life and work is a simple thrust "towards
excellence, to work hard and make a place for myself under the
For Bharati, computers present just another medium, like watercolours,
photography, lithography, sculpture. As she says: "Years
of working as a graphic designer with board and T-square got
some muscles jaded, while others itched to be used The fingers
took naturally to holding and tapping the mouse; and nails are
happily no longer lined with traces of paint and nasty india
"With every stride we take, we push a foot up front,
and one stays back. The footprint behind waiting to stretch out
ahead, and the one in front holding on till its time, to bring
up the rear. These prints mark our timelessness, of constantly
collecting shells on the sands, perceiving, choosing, and retaining
~ to carry on further and ahead. This stride is the core of this
exhibit. The step and its counterpoint, the perception and its
optimality, the choice and its indecision, the decision and its
alter ego, the instance and its inevitability. Every time we
mark that footprint, we look inwards towards the twin within
us, the other mind, the other sensibility waiting to be heard,
differing in quality and coherence.
"We wait to hear the indecision and yet make a choice,
we make a choice, and yet we consider it incomplete. Optimal
Nitin's an old video-hand whose penchant for working with
(and for) children drew him into computers some years ago, down
the road of 3D and Cel animation. He is also India-Coordinator
on <www.i-abc.org> (The International Animation Broadcasting
Council). His images in this show however interface computer-usage
with his other great love, the Himalaya.
"Scanning the picture into the computer, I have delicately
touched the patterns, bringing out the details I wanted to show
~ a titillation of the beauty that exists in our world."
Arun's a mainstream installation artist of the sort who creates
all sorts of things from gigantic exhibition pavilions and interiors
through POP wares to modular furniture. His continuously evolving
design-studio has earned a unique reputation over time as a rigorous
training-ground and crucible of creative young computer-based
professionals across streams as varied as virtual 3D through
to rock-solid architecture. His image for this show is a digital-camera
picture, pinched, twirled & embossed in an exercise of "Instant
Most of the prints in this exhibition have been discount-printed,
or sponsored outright, by Arun's company "Imagene"
as goodwill support for the effort ~ Thanks!
Karamjeet is a filmmaker, primarily committed to the
work begun some fifty years ago by his father, who continues
alongside him on what today is probably the longest professional
film/video documentation of the Indian Himalayas. Not surprisingly,
his interest in computer-based graphics originated in a desire
to bring titling and other graphics in-house, but the involvement
has grown over the years into an ongoing peripheral-preoccupation
that finds him continuously also involved with computer-based
projects in video, 2/3D animation & graphics, large-format
print work, and the web.
Ashim is one of the more active multiple-media artists in
New Delhi, who invented the title "Audiovisionary"
for himself many years ago. Audio from his music, and
Visionary from his stock photography and video films.
He has earlier held at least two solo photography-shows in this
very gallery, and will also be opening a major new mixed-media
solo show in New Delhi on September 7, 2000 (IIC annexe).
Grounded in traditional photo collage, this New York artist
embodies the new "transformative" photography, pursuing
his art almost like a laboratory scientist. Fanaticizing photo
illustrations and then assembling the pieces from disparate sources,
Sanjay synthesizes composite images through experimentation and
a sense of adventure. The results end up in publications such
as Time, Wired or The New York Times Magazine. He has been featured
in Graphis Photo 2000, Graphis Digital Photo 99, Communication
Arts and The IDEA. His fascination with photography and the transformative
power of digital tools continues to inspire him to take risks,
and like a scientist, to imagine the impossible.
Mainstream commercial and industrial photography is Pradeep's
mainline. With a niche reputation also as one of the finest contemporary
food-photographers in India, he needs little introduction. Digital
imaging for him is something he's still exploring, with simple
general-purpose computers and printers.
Atul too is a well-known mainstream photographer while also
(like Pradeep) exploring digital media at the same time. But
he's biased more towards travel & landscape work, and perhaps
just a wee tad more serious about soon making a full transition
from chemical to digital processes. His digital explorations
thus far have been concentrated mainly on photo retouching and
enhancing, in a process by which he's looking to master the medium
before moving on to state-of-the-art equipment.
A self-taught artist primarily involved with Black and White
-pencil and charcoal,- with a keen interest in technology, and
a belief in "Naturalising" technology. Earlier on paper,
and now with multimedia, he tries to work his way through with
expressing influences from nature using technology. He has a
keen interest in learning about the intricacy of natural shapes,
and apart from being a musician, also works as a freelance graphic
designer and web development professional.
"My fascination with the digital medium is confined largely
to collage. I enjoy being able to envisage a comprehensive new
image from a disparate set of parts. I illustrate, create, source
textures and scan them. I also use letters or bits of text, old
photographs - some mine, some from family albums and some anonymous,
and merge them to create a new image. I largely work in Photoshop
and sometimes in Painter and Illustrator.
"In this collection I have tried to create images that
Shankar was invited to curate this show based on his on-going
explorations with digital creative media and it's practitioners
through his young company Imadjinn, and it's six-monthly series
of CD-gazettes called "The IDEA" (The Indian Documentary
of Electronic Arts). Significant earlier shows organized
by him include Open Stage (music, poetry & theatre
@ Triveni Kala Sangam/Open Air Theatre, 1980), Milestones
(photographic prints @ Triveni Kala Sangam/Sridharani Gallery,
1991) and In Search of The Avant Garde (projected
photographs/seminar @ India International Centre/Auditorium,
1992). Shankar has always participated in shows he's organized,
but is neither a fulltime artist, nor curator or art-professional.
[The Indian Documentary of Electronic Arts]
... with grateful thanks to Arun Jethmalani, Sophie Gaur,
Anita Singh, Poonam Barua, E-Meditech Solutions,
Krishen Dhar and Tilmann Waldraff