For each one who is doing his or her bit to help those affected in the Uttarakhand tragedy, there is also the name of Camera Unlimited and art@indianaugust. The two institutions have organised a photography exhibition – ‘A Brand New Day – Rebuilding Uttarakhand exhibition’.
A total of 35 artists have donated their works to the exhibition and are exceptionally expressive. The works of Ravi Dhingra, Niraj Gera and Moushumee K Jha are evidence of the same.
While Ravi’s photographs are from a series capturing those related with religion, Niraj’s work is more profound when it comes to capturing human emotions. “I wanted to change the perception of people towards those associated with religion. The latter are usually perceived as different whereas the truth is that they are as normal as all of us,” shares Ravi whose photograph has two monks walking down a street in McLeod Ganj, Dharamsala. While one of the monks is talking on a cellphone, the other walks smartly with a huge smile lighting up his handsome features.
Niraj’s photo of the sad, old sadhu is in extreme contrast. “When I came out of a restaurant in Rishikesh, I was suddenly confronted by this sadhu begging for money. I felt as though there was something missing in his life and the pain in his eyes made me cajole him to pose for a picture before I gave him alms,” shares Niraj who has intricately captured the facial details of this bereft ascetic.
The most intriguing is the monochrome picture of a dancing woman in a crowd which depicts her oneness with God. Shot by Moushumee, the photograph speaks volumes about her work which is usually done around women. “I always keep an eye out to capture women and so I spotted this foreigner at the Maha Kumbh Mela in Allahabad this year,” informs the artist while describing how she zoomed her lens in to capture the woman’s state of trance even in a maddening crowd. “Her folks from Hare Rama Hare Krishna Mission were distributing the Bhagvada Gita and she also had musicians accompanying her but it is her devotion which enticed me to photograph only her!”