Who was always referred to as Sahib, and not his name, was remembered as cheeky and travelled.
An engineer and a missionary
making silver gelatin photographs in India
I inherited two old and dusty brown suitcases, full of my great grandfather’s photographic prints. The suitcases held copies left behind by the public institutions my great aunt had bequeathed the original collection too. At the time I was studying fine art photography so the materiality, historical context and photographic technique was held in high regard.
Unfortunately, they had been mounted with heavy glue surrounded by some crappy cardboard window mounts and the actual prints became foxed and generally unstable archivally speaking.Conversations about these prints always focused on conserving the silver gelatin and paper. I don’t think I ever really ‘looked’ at the actual subjects of the images. Looking now, the intrigue and nostalgic gaze is heightened in this the digital age.I first travelled to India in 2002 and took many analogue images.Today I have several collaborative connections in India that are maintained through digital platforms. I love the conversation these images carry when digitally printed on silk.Colonial and cultural histories. Traditional and contemporary technologies, the materiality of print and fibre and of family and context.