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Posted at: Apr 20, 2019, 8:53 AM; last updated: Apr 20, 2019, 8:53 AM (IST)

Exhibition displays forgotten heritage

Exhibition displays forgotten heritage
DC Shivdular Singh (second from right) with artist Jaspal Kamana (third from right) at the photography exhibition at the art gallery in Amritsr on Friday. Photo: Vishal Kumar

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, April 19

An exhibition of photographs and installations, titled Workers of Des Punjab, by ace photographer Jaspal Kamana opened at SG Thakar Singh art gallery. The exhibition was inaugurated by Deputy Commissioner Shivdular Singh and Diwan Manna, president, Punjab Lalit Kala Academy, who is collaborating with the IAFA for the three-day exhibition.

Kamana, who has been working on documenting workers, craftsmen of Punjab, dedicated his exhibition to his muse. “My work is related to the history, society and culture of the workers talked about by Sant Ram Udasi. For centuries, this class of society has been subjected to oppression. Capitalism and government’s infavourable policies have made their predicament even dire. Growing up in a village, I have seen these workers in farms, houses and workshops. Their creativity and skill never gave away even in most testing times. Their work is an art that is being lost to commercialisation and time,” he said.

His installation, right in the middle of the exhibition hall, captured the essence of the exhibition, with mud and broken pieces of earthen pots scattered across, just like the lives of these craftsmen.

“There is a need to revive and rehabilitated the kirtkaar (craftsmen) of Punjab as they carry the burden of our centuries-old traditions and heritage,” said Kamana. His work is among the few selected ones by Punjab Lalit Kala Academy to be showcased as solo exhibits across prominent galleries in Punjab.

Diwan Manna, president, Punjab Lalit Kala Academy, appreciated Kamana’s work, terming it not critical but humanist. “You have to see these photographs with a humanist approach as they depict the everyday struggle and lives of the workforce of our society. They capture a lot of emotions through lens, which lends them life.”

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