Looking forward to more printing this week. The set of workprints is beginning to take shape, and I'm starting to think about what I want to say with the final edit.
The project was a British Council funded exchange with the National Institute for Design in Ahmedabad for photographers. In my proposal, I talked about wanting to make a connection between the India of the 1930s and 1940s, when my parents lived there, and the India of today.
My plan had been to use photography to connect what I saw when working there with what Indian photographers were seeing at the time my family was there. I started to research photography by Indian photographers in the 1930s and 1940s. Most of the work I found was photojournalism, of the great and the good (or sometimes bad) and of special events such as the Delhi Durbar, also portraiture, landscape and architecture.
There was little on the everyday lives of ordinary people, so I decided to make some work about that. I shot mostly in the street, taking pictures of people at work or going to work.
Had hoped to crack on with my workprints today but tripped myself up by bringing in the wrong negs. However, all was not lost as I had some films to process and made some contact sheets for them.
I also wandered over to the Solent Showcase Gallery to see what was on there: I hadn't been able to find a website for it which seemed strange. I was in luck and found Guy Moreton from Photography putting up his work for a show opening next week, also the elusive Les Buckingham. So have at least made contact and learned that there will be more interest in putting ideas together with a show, rather than just putting up AA2A work because it is there. The website is being rebuilt rather slowly apparently, which is why I hadn't found it.
Getting to talk to the students a bit more, but not as much as I had hoped, partly because of the layout of the darkrooms: I had expected the outlet for the print processing machine to have desk space closer to it so that people could lay out their work as it came off the machine. This allows for discussion with other people doing the same, but because of the group darkrooms, that doesn't happen, although presumably it will be better when the darkrooms are rebuilt over the summer.
The students have started working in the darkrooms with me, makes it much more interesting. The first years are printing up work from a project on portraiture, so hoping I get to see more of their work as the deadline gets closer.
Made contact with one of the organisers at the Solent Showcase gallery and in process of fixing a date when we (the 3 AA2A artists) can meet her. The programme for the gallery is full for 2012, but there may be a possibility of other space in the university.
Also finally worked out how to claim back expenses for materials and, even better, found I can order photographic paper directly from the university's suppliers which is easier and much cheaper than using Calumet.
Beginning to feel I'm getting my feet under the table. Spent 4 days making prints in the darkroom, and produced about 10 prints, which is a nice surprise as it can take a whole day to get one right.
I'm printing work from a project I carried out in Ahmedabad, Gujarat in 2010 which has not so far been shown. The plan is to make enough prints to allow a considered edit, and then show the work.
I've had the darkroom pretty much to myself so far, but that will change now that students have had their induction. It will be good to see what they are doing and talk to them about their work.
Still trying to elicit a response from those running the Showcase Gallery about a show for the 3 AA2A artists sometime this year.