Pondy Photo 2014 grand launch event at the Old Distillery
Pondy Photo 2014 started off with a glamorous launch event on the evening of 20 March, 2014 at the Old Distillery, Pondicherry. Pondy Photo is a grand collection of multiple photography exhibitions by various artists from all over the world that is going to be held in Pondicherry over the next ten days. Kasha Vande, the brain and body behind PondyART is the chief organizer and coordinator of Pondy Photo 2014.
It was an invitation only wine and cheese event sponsored by Sula Vineyards. The chief guest for the event was Virendra Kataria, the Lt. Governor of Pondicherry. Among other guests who were present were Meera Kataria, a consultant to the Tourism Department of Pondicherry, Andreas Deffner, Yannick Cormier, Sebastian Cortes, Pablo Bartholomew, and all other photographers whose works will be on display during Pondy Photo 2014, Dinesh Khanna with Delhi Photo Festival, Lalit Verma of Aurodhan Gardens, which will be a part of Pondy Photo 2014 and various other people from different walks of life from in and around Pondicherry.
Kasha Vande began the evening with the welcome address by relating to the audience the theme of Pondy Photo 2014 which was to build awareness about the issues challenging India today through photography. Kasha admitted it to be the reason behind focusing on the different tribal communities. There are nine tribal communities whose photographs are up on the exhibition and they have been clicked by nine different photographers all of whom have been internationally published.
Pablo Bartholomew, whose work on a tribal community of Arunachal Pradesh are up on display at the Old Distillery spoke about his work with the tribal communities, his decades of experience and on how the tribal communities today are neglected and treated as uncivilized. He ended his speech with sharing the hope that one day our country will move forward and become more progressive with regard to this issue.
Andreas Deffner whose work on the tribal people of Andaman and Nicobar Islands were earlier displayed in the Old Distillery was acknowledged by Kasha for helping in arranging and putting up the pictures in the distillery for all to see. Yannick Cormier whose work on Nari Kurava will be on display in Pondy Photo 2014 was also the curator of the event as Kasha addressed in her welcome address.
Around Midnight, a jazz band from Bangalore played during the evening as the guests enjoyed the wine and cheese event. There was also an acrobatic dance performance on ropes that the audience thoroughly enjoyed.
Kasha Vande explained the main thought behind Pondy Photo 2014 was to get art out there and to not make it exclusive. She wanted these photographic pieces of art to be out in the open so that everybody can have access to it. The Pondy Photo 2014 is a mega event which will be on till 30 March. throughout these ten days, photographs of many renowned photographers have been put up on show at different places like The Old Distillery, Aurodhan Gallery and Artika Gallery. Apart from the exhibitions, workshops, panel discussions, multi media presentations and Q&A sessions with the photographers have also been arranged at Hotel Atithi and Kasha Ki Asha.
Photos: Sooganya N and Tathagata Mitra
Camera: Radhika Khanna
Editing: Tathagata Mitra
Guided by: Radhika Khanna
1st M.A. Mass Communication