Focusing the lens on rural lanes of Bengal: A photography exhibition in Delhi - Hindustan Times
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Focusing the lens on rural lanes of Bengal: A photography exhibition in Delhi

ByManvi Singh
Nov 22, 2023 01:59 PM IST

Delhi-based photographer Sanjay Das' 34 frames capture the life of rural Bengal and its rich cultural heritage in this ongoing show at Bikaner House.

Bengal’s rich traditions unfold like a captivating story as one views artist Sanjay Das’ photographs displayed at the ongoing exhibition, The Red Hibiscus Trail, presented by Gallery Ragini.

An archival print on paper titled The Performer, is shot by artist Sanjay Das. (Sanjay Das)
An archival print on paper titled The Performer, is shot by artist Sanjay Das. (Sanjay Das)

“The present series shows my travels from over a decade, which have led me to learn about the rural cultural heritage of Bengal,” says Das, who has documented terracotta temples, tribes, architectural heritage, rituals, and folk arts of the region. “I specifically wanted to throw light on the rural side of Bengal because when someone talks about this place, they usually limit themselves to Kolkata. But that’s not all that this part of our country is all about,” he adds.

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An archival print on paper, Rath Yatra, captures scenes from the annual ritual that takes place in West Bengal. (Sanjay Das)
An archival print on paper, Rath Yatra, captures scenes from the annual ritual that takes place in West Bengal. (Sanjay Das)

The Delhi-based lensman has, in fact, always been fascinated by the unexplored cultural aspects of Bengal. “I used to hear stories from my family about the place, but it wasn’t until I turned 42 that I first visited Bengal. I realised that a few days weren’t enough and thus went back later to capture the rural perspective of the state with a gameplay of lights from Sandakphu (Nepal) to the Sunderbans,” he recalls.

Ina Puri, curator of the exhibition, shares: “Das not only depicts the Victoria Memorial but also the craftsmanship, cultures and spiritual motivation of the people of Bengal. This is why we gave this name to the show, since if there’s a trail that depicts Bengal, then it is the jaba phool (red hibiscus).”

Catch It Live

What: The Red Hibiscus Trail

Where: Living Traditions Centre, Bikaner House, Pandara Road

On till: November 25

Timing: 11am to 7pm

Nearest Metro Station: Khan Market (Violet Line)

For more such stories follow @htcity.delhijunction

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