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.