Notorious Rowdies

About the exhibition
15 Sep 2017 - 19 Oct 2017

Clare Arni’s interest in “Notorious Rowdies” began some years ago while scouring the crime beat columns of the Deccan Herald, which were filled with dramatic references to rowdies and their nefarious activities. Each rowdy had many aliases charting their criminal career, with forenames names like Dairy, Chicken and JCB. This is when it struck her that perhaps there was a latent rowdy in each of us, wanting to be released. She began to approach friends, fellow artists and writers, who were game to find their inner rowdy. Each volunteer was requested to search within themselves and reach out to their rowdy persona, rich with a background and crime sheets. Over several conversations, the individual rowdies would slowly emerge, with the intricate details developing gradually - what were they likely to wear, where would they hangout, what crimes would they commit.

What began as a fun exploration eventually turned into a serious performance based project, that unearthed each participant’s inner fantasies, and allowed both, participant and artist to delve deeper into notions of violence and voyeurism.

This exhibition is accompanied by a text written by author Zac O’Yeah, who was one of Clare’s first “Rowdies.” 

About the artist
Clare Arni

Clare Arni is a photographer based in Bangalore, India. Her work encompasses architecture, travel, social documentary and cultural heritage. She has been published by leading British book publishers Phaidon, Thames and Hudson and Dorling Kindersley. She has also contributed work to magazines like Abitare (Italy) Tatler, Conde Nast (UK) Wallpaper, The Wall street journal and Harvard Design magazine as well as many Indian magazines. Her solo photographic books document the history of the architecture of Banaras, Palaces of the Deccan, the recent excavations of Hampi, the capital of the Vijaynagar Empire and a four month journey along the course of the river Kaveri. Her solo exhibitions document the lives of marginalized communities in some of the most remote regions of India and the disappearing trades of urban India. Her work has been exhibited Internationally at the Essl Museum, Vienna Austria, Grosvenor Vadehra, London, Bose Pacia, New York, Berkeley art museum, California and is the permanent collection of the Saatchi Gallery, London, the Freer/Sackler gallery of the  Smithsonian Institute, Washington and Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.