Monday, February 13, 2012

BACKGROUND MATTER, visual research on Indian photo studios

Background Matter :Researching Photo Studios of India

A Photo Exhibit and Installation Kuba Ryniewicz and Siddharth Chadha

At the intersection of technology and culture, transitions from hand painted backdrops to photoshop super-impositions have transformed the Photo Studio. 
The physicality of the image is replaced by digital files. Nevertheless, studio photographs are still used to preserve the truth likeness of people memories and the past. 
The exhibit points to the accompanying changes of the popular aesthetic of the digital era. The role of the photographer as a creator of portraits, and the importance of 
portraiture to the society is the central theme of the work.

Kuba Ryniewicz, former student of Philosophy at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland, finished Contemporary Photographic Practice at Northumbria University in
Newcastle, England. For this project he used various 35mm cameras such as Nikon EM, Zenith, and compact cameras. 

Siddharth Chadha is researcher, indie film-maker and a community media practitioner. Sometimes you find him dabbling in paints and philosophy, along sidewalks of the city.
Recently, he has been spotted setting up an ice-cream store and an organic farm in Punjab. 
You can contact him at

1.Shanthi Road Studio/Gallery


Thursday, February 9, 2012


About the Talk:

Deborah : For over twenty-five years, I have engaged painting, installation, animation, video, performance and sculpture to connect with the particular history and architecture of site and community. My love of painting, as gestural, contemplative, handmade and human, and the energy of old churches have inspired both my solo and collaborative practices, such as my recent project at the Glass Curtain Gallery, Co Laboratory, with my collective ED JR. and the collective (f)utility projects. More recently, in my exhibition Steady as She Goes! At EBERSMOORE in Chicago, my paintings and patterns based on my studio include a site-specific wallpaper installation. As I engage the dilemma of relating my solo painting practice to the experience of others, I will continue to develop a deeply personal language in painting, and discover ways to include the history and perceptions of others. 

Deborah Boardman is Chicago based. She is a painter, installation artist and member of the Chicago Land Artist Collective, ED JR. She is an Adjunct Associate Professor of painting and drawing and arts administration at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She has been producing art works for the past 25 years. Her works encompass of paintings, installations, animation, performance and sculptures in order to connect with the architecture and history of the place. Her subtle style helps the audience to connect to it and serves as an encouragement to the viewers.

1.Shanthi Road Studio/Gallery


TRAFFIC MASALA by Christian Engelmann

Traffic Masala

The overwhelming chaos of Bangalore/Indian traffic is the first thing that strikes the foreigner as he lands in our country. The variety of vehicles from cycles, bullock carts, auto rickshaws to fancy cars, we have them all. Each one of them making their way to their respective destination, fighting for space, squeezing in and out of the maze of traffic. Here you make your own rules, for survival is the key. The Indian auto market is making cheaper cars like the Nano, we have just managed to have the metro but the traffic never seems to ease. We have office hours, rush hours, school leaving hour and sometimes happy hours on holidays!

Christian Englemann is a sculptor, who is fascinated by the mechanics of machines and has an ironical and satirical take on the idea of speed and the age of the machine. Where are we going is the question? It may sound philosophical but it is a vital question in our reality.

The bullock cart still exists in the city that has been hailed for its information technology. We see this oxen driving in all its majesty between the traffic, carrying loads of metal, steel, bricks, sand and any-thing the buoyant city needs for its accelerated growth. This project involves mechanization of this ancient mode of transport that is an icon of the man and beast. Englemann manages to fix an extra wheel and a remote to make an absurd remake. In the third world context we call it Jugaad-a local adaptation of a technical or mechanical device that can be recycled and reused to suit local needs. The futility and absurdity is part of this project. How do we innovate with iconic traditional bullock cart? Can you imagine it without the bull, but with a remote control that makes it move! Anything is possible in this cut and paste aesthetic.

Jugaad vehicles have been part of rural innovations that speaks of sustenance and survival as a tactic, to make the two worlds meet, high tech and innovative fixture by the street mechanic. In India this jugaad engineering is an alternative. It is a vital ingredient that is inspired by the method in the madness that drives a country, we live in the past as much in the future at the same time. We see it every day and the work of Englemann makes it more visible and is a tribute to this kind of local creative hacking.

1Shanthiroad studio/gallery