L to R - Adithee Balaji & Sindhu Kulkarni (Tacit Design), Devika Sukumaran (Grantee), Bhargavi Gundala (Dhi Artspace), Jay Jina (Chitraayana), Dr. Prof Kavita Daryani Rao (Vice Chancellor, Jawaharlal Nehru Architecture and Fine Arts University), Navin Mittal IAS (Commissioner, Collegiate Education & Technical Education, Government of Telangana) and Dr Nagaraj Paturi (Senior Director Indica), Danji Thotapalli (Indica Pictures), Kumar Kanchu & Arvind Chenji (Jury Members), Bharti Joshi (Grantee parent) and Abdul Munaff (Grantee).
Anveshana, a coffee table book focused on vanavasi, sancharavasi and gramavasi communities of India was launched at a well-attended event at Dhi Artspace, a premier art gallery, in Ameerpet evening of Jan 12th, 2023. Anveshana is the outcome of the Indica Culture Photography Grant. Portfolios from eight upcoming photographers from all over the country were featured in the book supported by well-written text on each of the eight indigenous communities that were covered. The program started at 5.30 sharp with a welcome and introduction by Danji Thotapalli, Chief Curator of Indica Pictures that manages the ICPG grant and Jay Jina, Director of Chitraayana, a vertical dedicated to coffee table book. Both Indica Pictures and Chitraayana are verticals within Indica, a non-profit organization that is focused on reviving Indic civilizational values. The event was graced by Dr. Prof Kavita Daryani Rao - Vice Chancellor, Jawaharlal Nehru Architecture and Fine Arts University, Sri Navin Mittal, IAS - Commissioner, Collegiate Education & Technical Education, Government of Telangana and Dr Nagaraj Paturi - Senior Director, Indica. The guests of honour unwrapped the coffee-table book and announced it is available on Amazon and Flipkart for purchase.
Sri Navin Mittal expressed his delight that the subject of Anveshana aligns with his own interest in the tribal, nomadic and pastoral communities. Prof Kavita was appreciative of the quality of pictures and written-ups and said that it showed the hard-work that went into the making of Anveshana. Dr Paturi talked about how the subject of the coffee table book is a door to the vast subject of indigenous people in India and the opportunity that exists for others to become yaatris to discover other the profundity that is embedded in India.
Bhargavi Gundala, founder director of Dhi Artspace welcomed the attendees and spoke of how coffee-table books are works of art.
ICPG Jury Board members Arvind Chenji, Kumar Kanchu and Sapna Reddy who were present the launch shared their thoughts. Two of the grantees, Devika Sukumaran and Abdul Munaff, shared their thoughts.
Munaff mentioned about how his photography journey was filled with challenges – financial as well as personal. The grant from ICPG gave him an immense boost to continue photography.
Bharti Joshi, the mother of Himadri Sharma spoke about the untimely loss of her daughter. She said that for Himadri, exposure to a nomadic sense of being, manifested early which initiated her onto a pathless journey to witness a boundless world. Her untimely death in March 2022, several months into the ICPG grant, devastated the family in ways beyond the level of human tragedy. Bhartiji mentioned that Himadri continues to live within her, just as she was born 23 years ago.
Danji Thotapalli spoke about the journey that started with selection of the grantees and how they overcame challenges faced due to Covid in completing the shooting of the portfolios. The final phase involved actual design and production of Anveshana. The theme of indigenous communities across vanavasi, sancharavasi and gramavasi peoples took the grantees across Bharat, as true yaatris.
Jay Jina offered thanks to all stakeholders in the project - the jury board, grantees, the writers, design agency and the print house.
Anveshana is available for purchase in India on Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Publishers right now. Please peruse the listings below and purchase a copy for yourself and your friends.
International Listing on Amazon will be available soon