Aperture 243 - Summer 2021

Delhi: Looking Out/Looking In

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Issue Details

This summer, Aperture presents a special issue focused on the relationship between photography, urbanism, and activist trajectories from Delhi. Guest edited by Rahaab Allana, the Alkazi Foundation’s lead curator, the issue explores multiple incarnations of the city’s photographic culture, from O. P. Sharma’s experimental works from the 1960s to Aditi Jain’s intimate tableaux of Delhi’s trans community today. Interviews with revered writer Arundhati Roy and with Bangladesh’s best-known photojournalist, Shahidul Alam, illuminate sites of protest in the city and throughout South Asia. Skye Arundhati Thomas revisits Sheba Chhachhi’s feminist staged portraits from the 1980s and ’90s. Featuring a cross section of dynamic image-makers and thinkers, such as Jyoti Dhar, Sunil Gupta, Ishan Tankha, and Anshika Varma, and emerging voices Uzma Mohsin and Prarthna Singh, the issue is a distinctive meditation on regionalism, politics, and identity, through archival and contemporary photographic viewpoints.
Format: Paperback / softback
Number of pages: 140
Publication date: 2021-06-08
Measurements: 9.25 x 12 x 0.6 inches
ISBN: 9781597115049

Significant support of Aperture magazine is provided by The Kanakia Foundation and by Jon Stryker and Slobodan Randjelović. Aperture gratefully acknowledges additional lead support for this issue provided by the MurthyNAYAK Foundation. Further generous support is provided in part by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Aperture Foundation’s programs are made possible in part by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Table Of Contents


Made in L.A., The Paradox of Stillness, Lorraine O’Grady, Lynn Hershman Leeson

Day Jobs
Rebecca Bengal on Susan Meiselas’s early collaborations in South Carolina

Mikelle Street on Donavon Smallwood’s images of Black tranquility in Central Park

Dawoud Bey on John Coltrane, Jason Moran, and the writing of Sarah M. Broom


Guest Editor’s Note
The dynamic images and social landscapes of a restless city
Rahaab Allana

The City as a Novel
Arundhati Roy on life and politics in Delhi
A Conversation with Shohini Ghosh

The Photobook as Public Space
How can photobooks be a platform for personal narratives?
Deepali Dewan in Conversation with Indu Antony and Kaamna Patel

The Printed World
The midcentury magazine that offered cosmopolitan visions of India
Sabeena Gadihoke

Direct Action
Sheba Chhachhi and the spirit of feminist activism
Skye Arundhati Thomas

Visible Cities
The films of Anamika Haksar and Priya Sen
Latika Gupta

The Lives of Buildings
Photographing India’s modern architecture
Kaiwan Mehta

On Freedom and Resistance
Shahidul Alam on the images and activism that inspired a region
A Conversation with Christopher Pinney

We Were There
Sunil Gupta’s vision for a queer politics of belonging
Shanay Jhaveri


O. P. Sharma
Light Work
Diva Gujral

Uzma Mohsin
Jyoti Dhar

Ishan Tankha
A Peal of Spring Thunder
Amitava Kumar

Aditi Jain
The Glow in the Mirror
Adwait Singh

Collective Shift
Across South Asia, photographers are banding together to tell new stories
Anshika Varma

Srinivas Kuruganti
American Diary
Sunaina Maira

Prarthna Singh
One Hundred Days of Resistance
Kamayani Sharma


Seven questions for Ram Rahman

Resources to support COVID-19 relief in India

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