Pablo Bartholomew is a self-taught, independent Indian photographer. He was awarded the first prize by World Press Photo in 1975 for his series on morphine addicts. In 1984 he won the World Press Photo “Picture of the Year” award for his iconic image of the Bhopal Gas Tragedy. His work has been featured in magazines like New York Times, Time, Life, Newsweek, Business Week, National Geographic, Geo, Der Spiegel, Figaro Magazine, Paris Match, Telegraph, The Sunday Times Magazine, The Guardian, and Observer Magazine.
For the past decade he has been working with his father’s and his archives to produce a series of exhibitions of their work. Of these the earliest of his work, OUTSIDE IN – 70s & 80s – A Tale of 3 Cities – a collection of 70 black-and-white photographs representing his personal documentary photography, these images remain as apropos today as they were then. There was an acute absence of documentation of changing urban India in these two decades, particularly Delhi, Bombay and Calcutta, the three cities referenced in the title. This body of photographs serves as a chronicle of the cities’ shifting nature, character and function.
As testimony to the enduring value of his images, these records of urban life have immediacy, an ability to make the “past” contemporary to the viewer. Primarily, however, these photographs are witness to the flux in the social and cultural landscape at that point; through the uniquely personal filter of images of the artist’s self-portraits, friends, family and social milieu. In this exhibition, Pablo Bartholomew’s is the floating, nomadic world of his teens, of psychedelic lifestyles and of his presence within what he refers to as “the first free-thinking generation after Independence” – a world he had personal exposure to as the son of Richard Bartholomew, preeminent art critic, curator, poet and photographer.
These prints are notes from his diary enacting personal dialogs, which inadvertently connect to a universal, cross-generational ethos. Outside-In was first shown at Les Rencontres D’Arles, a Festival of photography in France in 2007 after which, in 2008, it traveled to the National Museum, New Delhi and the National Gallery of Modern of Art, Mumbai, Bodhi Art, New York, and in 2008 to Bodhi Berlin, 2009 and the Harrington Street Arts Centre, Kolkata, 2010.
He has exhibited internationally at “Another Asia” at the Nooderlicht Photo Festival in Netherlands (2006), at Chobimela, Dhaka (2006), Angkor Photo Festival, Cambodia (2006), Month of Photography, Tokyo (2007), Les Rencontres d’Arles, Arles, (2007), “Private Spaces Public Spaces”, Newark Museum, USA (2007), “Act of Faith” at the Nooderlicht Photo Festival, Netherlands (2007), Bodhi Art, New York (2008), Bodhi Berlin (2009), Rubin Museum of Art, New York (2009), “Where Three Dreams Cross”, Whitechapel Gallery, London (2010), Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland (2010), Sakshi Art Gallery, Mumbai (2011), and Fishbar Gallery, London (2011).
This exhibtion is made possible with the help of the Australia India Counci.
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