Masud Raihan & Shibaditya Ray
Himadri aims to present ‘a complex surface through simple elements’. Each photograph tells a story and the stories ensconced in Himadri’s photographs are indebted to his penchant for engaging with the quotidian. His photography featuring the Ahmedpur-Katwa narrow gauge railway, some of which have been showcased in the recent Bikshan 6th photo exhibition, is inspired by his childhood spent in the Ahmedpur rail colony, his love for train-journeys and love for observing people.
The crowds he captures through his lens in Venarasi and Kumbh are a treat to his eyes and sensibility. His is however not an exercise of objective sightseeing. He is personally engaged with what he views and is an empathetic observer. Though Himadri uses methods like ‘fill in flash’ which creates an impact of their own, he declares it is not the technicalities but the emotional aspect and the experience that he is focused on. Photography to him is not a mechanical assignment but a pleasurable medium through which he endeavors to explore both the subject and himself. He is unambiguously involved in self-reflexivity.
The photographers of Venarasi he decided to document offers him a springboard to delve into his own childhood trips, explore the memories captured by those photographers now preserved in the form of family-albums and so on. His photography is thus deeply steeped in nostalgia and the poetic imagery they invoke is a result not of dependence on technical labour and execution but of spontaneity and personal engagement.