Chronicles of the Past Life, Bombay (1970s-80s)
At a cafe, Bombay © Pablo Bartholomew
Rag pickers fighting, Bombay © Pablo Bartholomew
Roadside photo studio, Bombay © Pablo Bartholomew
Man asleep on Chowpatty Beach (II), Bombay © Pablo Bartholomew
Bathers at Mahalakshmi, Bombay © Pablo Bartholomew
Baby on a taxi, Bombay © Pablo Bartholomew
Man with a bag, Bombay © Pablo Bartholomew
With Chronicles of the Past Life, Bombay (1970s – ‘80s), presented at the Photoink Gallery, New Delhi, Pablo Bartholomew offers a romantic stroll through Bombay of the 1970s in 102 pictures.
After leaving bureaucratic Delhi, the city of his tormented youth, he settled in Bombay hoping, like others, to find “friendship, shelter, food, and the chance to be discovered and become somebody”. He began working as a journalist and since then, never stopped photographing his adopted city.
It is with immense tenderness that he guides us through the streets of Bombay. Beyond the seascapes of Mahalakshmi and Haji Ali, he captures daily scenes of bathing, walking, or little groups of ragpickers on the beach.
City pictures feature oversized monsoon umbrellas in the chic streets of the Colaba district of southern Bombay; the middle-class Bombay wallas in cafés or chatting on the shady verandas while crowds gather around gambling boys.
In Film City, the photographer takes us backstage, behind giant reflectors or curtains of rain pouring out of watering pipes during a nocturnal shoot.
Pablo Bartholomew observes the city and its inhabitants, especially the most modest, with poetry and affection. Thirty years later, it is that same emotion mixed with sweet nostalgia that emanates from these pictures that remain as a witness to a world long gone.
A Journalist, born in Delhi in 1955, he was awarded the World Press Picture of the Year in 1984 for his image of a half-buried face of a child victim of the Bhopal Gas Tragedy.
He has been featured in several international festivals including Chobi Mela in Dhaka, Bangladesh, the Angkor Festival, Siem Reap in Cambodia and the Nooderlicht Photo Festival in Holland in 2006 as well as the Rencontres d’Arles in 2007.
In 2010, his work was featured in the exhibition “Where Three Dreams Cross, 150 years of Photography from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh” at the Whitechapel Gallery in London and the Fotomuseum Winterthur in Switzerland.
He currently lives and works in Delhi
Pablo Bartholomew: Chronicles of the Past Life, Bombay (1970s-80s)
Until March 24, 2012
Galerie Photoink, Delhi
Hyundai MGF Building, Ground Floor, 1 Jhandewalan, Faiz Road New Delhi
011 2875 5940