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A homecoming exhibition brings together Ram Shergill’s Indian photographs

The British fashion photographer best known for his work with Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Tatler, Dazed & Confused and W magazine, Ram Shergill has collaborated with subjects like Amy Winehouse, Diane Kruger and Naomi Campbell. Shergill is in town to launch Kaleidoscope, an exhibition that curates some of his most iconic work with an Indian context.
Indian connect
Bringing together photographs taken over a 10-year period, the exhibition is particularly special for Shergill, who feels it is an ‘honour’ to exhibit his work ‘in the land of his forefathers’. Elaborating on his kaleidoscopic theme, he explains that the idea was inspired by a kaleidoscope he was given as a child. “Once you turned the nozzle you would get many patterns, which in my mind I would make scenes and pictures out of.” There is a strong Abu Jani & Sandeep Khosla presence in the collection, from Shergill’s project on the duo’s 25th anniversary. Other pieces were initially commissioned for UK-based Harper’s and Queen, Drama Magazine, UK Bazaar, among others.
Behind the lens
Renowned for always giving his subjects a part to play, the sense of character and atmosphere is ever apparent in Shergill’s portraits. In Floating in Couture, which was inspired by The Lady of Shalott, the photographer mused on the concept of freedom, expressing it through the ‘dream-like stature’ of his subject. Discussing the visually arresting Rainbow Nation, the photographer shares that “it’s about the many colours that we have in our psyche, we see life in different colours. I feel we have a pot of gold within us, and I wanted to portray that in this image.” The quintessential Indian elephant also makes an appearance in several photographs, reflecting the fact that Shergill sees it as an animal that ‘reflects the power’ of India. “The inter relation between the model and the animal shows how man and animal can be strong together to create a harmony on earth,” he signs off.

Until February 5. Monday – Saturday, 10 am–6 pm. At Sua House, Kasturba Cross Road. Details: 40535217

— Maegan Dobson Sippy

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