Serena Chopra
1

BHUTAN : A CERTAIN MODERNITY

This body of work emerged from an in-depth, extensive travel exploring the culture and heritage of Bhutan for over a decade that led to forming intimate relationships with the people. An evocative black and white series of photographs forms a unique personal photographic perspective of the landlocked Himalayan country. “Providing insights into the challenges faced by the Bhutanese people as they strive towards a more holistic idea of modernity that is more inclusive of their heritage, Serena’s vivid and classical photographs span everyday life in Bhutan: from the bustling modern capital of Thimphu, with its beauty salons, pool clubs, teens smartly dressed for disco nights, to the quiet contemplative gazes of the herders, nuns, farmers and nomadic tribes in remote regions like Merak and Sakteng, where the traditional ways of life remain frozen in time” Tasveer Arts

SEE MORE

5

MAJNU KA TILA

The inspiration for this project came from a conversation between Serena and the Dalai Lama in 2006 when His Holiness suggested, “as a photographer you should do something to expose the Tibetan issue.” Then he laughed, “of course after that you can photograph me too!” Majnu Ka Tilla is a no-man’s land where though the Tibetans struggle to preserve their culture, religion, and language, they treat it as temporary. They do not seek Indian citizenship or to belong because that would mean accepting defeat. The refrain is ‘Free Tibet,’ and their dream is to return to a free Tibet one day. They wonder what will happen when their parents’ generation has passed away and the new generation has no roots in Tibet, or elsewhere.

SEE MORE

6

THE TALE OF TIME DIARIES

A by invitation project, initiated by The Arts and Cultural Heritage Trust, to do a body of photographs for the outdoor installation in the archways of the heritage Townhall building given over to the Partition Museum by the Indian government. The Museum opened in August 2017 on the 70th anniversary of Partition of India and Pakistan in 1947. The work features portraits of survivors of that horrific displacement of about 15 million people and is a tale that must be remembered.

SEE MORE

7

BONJOUR INDIA

In collaboration with the Festival of France Show, Bonjour India that took place in 2013, this project showcases photographs of the architectural heritage of Chandernagore, a former French colony located north of Kolkata in West Bengal. This body of work takes you through old colonial homes, churches, city locales and a cemetery that invoke memories of the French colonization of India. The reality of local Bengali populous of Chandernagore living in grand French colonial homes is dire need of restoration.

SEE MORE

8

SAGAR PURI JI : ALONG THE GANGA

A journey featuring the portraiture of a Hindu Naga Sadhu, Sagar Puri Ji, an uninhibited young 19 year old at the Kumbh Mela in Haridwar, 2010 and then again when he was age 23 at the Ardh Kumbh, Varanasi, 2013. These photographs have been taken while intimately witnessing him perform his daily chores and rituals, an insight into the unknown mysterious world of Naga Sadhu. Sagar Puri Ji, amidst his contemplative moods, is not self-conscious believing that all self-consciousness comes from the viewer.

SEE MORE