Evita Goze

Dhruv Malhotra

Posted in inspiration, photography, writings by evitagoze on July 9, 2011

Online photography magazine fotokvartals.lv recently published my short interview with photographer Dhruv Malhotra who I met in Brighton Photography Biennale last year. On their website is the latvian version. Here you can take a look at the english one:

1. You had been studying economics. What made you to switch to photography?

I finished my BA in Economics in 2006 and by then i’d gotten really disillusioned with the subject. I’d been making images with a small point and shoot and after college i bought a DSLR and that led me deeper and deeper into the photograph. I bought my Mamiya RZ67 in 2008 and after that there was no going back.

 2.Why do you prefer shooting at night? Does the darkness help you to capture something you wouldn’t be able to capture in the daylight?

I have always been attracted to the night, there is a sense of mystery in the darkness that is not accessible by day. I prefer the solitude and the process of working at night, with a tripod, long exposures and patience. The night conceals much from your vision and only by looking intently can one peel back the layers of darkness; i find some poetry in this; the longer you look, the more you see.

 3.Could you tell a bit more about your “Sleepers” series. How did you get this idea and what was important for you to depict?

“Sleepers” grew out of an earlier project, “Noida Soliloquy”, which was about the urban city at night and the suburb of New Delhi i was living in from 2007 – 2010.

When i was out prowling the night for pictures, I would make many images of people sleeping out in the open, with the enviornment and the space they were inhabiting and with time it grew into a project of its own.

It is important for me to contextualise the Sleeper within their enviornment and see the human figure almost as a sculpture of sorts within the man made urban enviornment.

 4. Have you ever felt threatened when taking photographs at night?

Definitely. Noida, the city where i was living, had one of the highest crime rates in India and i would usually go out with a can of pepper spray. In one incident, i was attacked by 4 men on bikes and i had to use the pepper spray on them to be able to run away from the situation with my camera, tripod and lenses.

 5.You are currently living in New York and doing a residency in the School of Visual Arts, right? Have you started to work on any new projects there and could you tell a bit about it?

I recently concluded a residency called the Photo-Global at the School of Visual Arts in NYC which i got a scholarship for at the Hyeres festival in France last year.

My work in New York has expanded my interrogation of space and the urban into new directions where i would make constructions, and photograph them by night in the context of their environment, to allude to the process of identification and the internal structuring of urban space.


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