Book Release | Witness: Kashmir 1986-2016: 9 Photographers


India Foundation for the Arts in collaboration with People Tree invites you to the Book Release of Witness: Kashmir 1986-2016: 9 Photographers -Edited by Sanjay Kak. Kaushik Ramaswamy, photojournalist and printmaker, will be in conversation with Sanjay Kak and photographers Dar Yasin and Syed Shahriyar.

The book brings together more than 200 photographs by a selected group of practitioners. The oldest amongst them was already a working professional in 1986, and the youngest not yet twenty in 2016: Meraj Ud din, Javeed Shah, Dar Yasin, Javed Dar, Altaf Qadri, Sumit Dayal, Showkat Nanda, Syed Shahriyar and Azaan Shah.

Photography in Kashmir has emerged as a powerful witness to its troubled present. Over the past thirty years a remarkable generation of photographers, rooted in the everyday of photojournalism and stretching away from those limits when they can, have steadily illuminated a little understood period of contemporary life in Kashmir. This often stunning body of work has challenged the established images of Kashmir—as a beautiful landscape sans people; as an innocent paradise; and more recently, as a paradise beset by mindless violence.

The accompanying text by Sanjay Kak draws from conversations with the photographers to bring out the complex relationship that each one of them has with photography and the varied ways in which they balance it with their commitment to their own lives, and to Kashmir. At once both insightful and unsettling in their beauty, the photographs in this book raise profound questions about the place of artistic practice in zones of conflict.

This project was part supported by the Prince Claus Fund for Culture and Development, under their Culture in Defiance programme; and India Foundation for the Arts, under the Arts Research programme.

Please gather by 7 pm for food, beverages and seats. It is a donation based event.

Post Event –

The day after Mumbai, only one place for Witness to show: Goa, and the lively open air space of 6 Assagao, a house in a Goan village made famous by the presence of the People Tree shop and Gunpowder restaurant… And every Monday evening devoted to thinking about things.
Photographer and Print-maker Kaushik Ramaswamy had an intense, often deeply probing conversation with photographers Dar Yasin and Syed Shahriyar, about photojournalism, photography, and inevitably, Kashmir. The pictures were taken by a visiting student from Bangalore: Gracias, Sultana Zana!