Exhibitions

> New world chronicles of an old world colour

Ronny Sen

07 July - 28 July, 2016


New world chronicles of an old world colour — an exhibition of Ronny Sen’s photographs is presented by The Polish Institute in New Delhi in collaboration with Latitude 28. This exhibition is a partner event of Delhi Photo Festival 2015.

An exploration of melancholia, ‘New world chronicles of an old world colour’ is Ronny Sen’s recent work created during the photographer’s art residency stay in Gdańsk City Gallery, Poland earlier this year. 'Last winter, I spent three weeks in Poland in an old city called Gdańsk at the mouth of the Motława River. While there, I often thought of how it shared with my home city and state the many burdens of a communist past. This serendipitous connection became the locus of my attempts to connect to a place I was otherwise a stranger to. I was deeply inspired by Polish filmmaker Krzysztof Kieślowski’s seminal work ‘Three Colors Trilogy’. Taking a cue from his film, I wanted to react to everything that was going on around me, through individual shades.

I had my own baggage because I came from Calcutta where the communists had ruled for the past three decades. I failed terribly; the colours in my memory were different from what I was encountering here. Soon disillusioned, I wasn't sure what I was looking for anymore. I sought out every glimpse of the accidental flare of hues, looking in and out, unnoticed and unseen. Capturing colours, seeking them out and arranging them in order would reveal meaning, I had thought. But what I ended up photographing were mundane things, seemingly regular, even banal, which only furthered the obscurity I had meant to resolve in the very beginning. In the strange and melancholic Polish winter, I grappled anew with the fading of the left and of red --the colour which had been its most enduring symbol in the past. Desolate, I looked thus for its chance traces and eventually moved to other things, left behind unnoticed in crevices, there in the streets where Solidarity had once emerged,” writes Ronny Sen

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Ronny Sen


Ronny Sen (b. 1986, Silchar) is a film director, writer and photographer based in Calcutta. His debut feature film Cat Sticks world premiered in the competition section at Slamdance Film Festival, 2019 where it won the jury honorable mention. He has previously directed television documentaries for BBC. He started his career as a photographer and has made two artist books, Khmer Din (2013) and End of Time (2016). He was invited to be an artist in residence in Japan by The Japan Foundation in 2013 and in Poland by the Polish Institute in 2016. He received the Getty Images Instagram Grant in 2016 for his work in Jharia coal mines which were shown in his debut solo exhibition in 2018 titled, Fire Continuum at TARQ in Mumbai.

His works are included in the permanent collection of the Alkazi Collection of Photography.

Press

  • Ronny Sen photographs a beautiful Polish winter

    Dregs of a common political past is what photographer Ronny Sen thought he would find when he moved to the Polish port city of Gdańsk for an art residency last year. Sen came from Kolkata, a city ruled by a Communist government for more than three decades, and expected to find in Poland—also an erstwhile communist regime—a landscape similar to where he came from.

    Architectural Digest
    06 Jul 2016
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  • While searching for Poland’s Red past, an Indian photographer discovers its beautiful grey winter

    Ronny Sen wanted to discover commonalities between Gdańsk and Kolkata. He found something else in the process. Last winter, when photographer Ronny Sen was at an art residency in Gdańsk, Poland, he was possessed by the idea of discovering a past that mirrored the Communist landscape of his hometown, Kolkata.

    Scroll
    05 Jul 2016
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  • Red is the warmest colour

    In the midst of a Polish winter, Ronny Sen searches for traces of the country’s communist past In this writer’s experience, photographers aren’t always great raconteurs. But 29-year-old Ronny Sen disproves that. Kolkata-based Sen is in town to showcase his work made during a residency in Poland in 2015

    The Hindu
    05 Jul 2016
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