Memories of past in motion

The Bengal Post: Kolkata 23rd November 2012

Celebrated Indian photographer Nimai Ghosh inaugurates Shahidul Alam’s book “My journey as a witness” in Kolkata.

A photography workshop at Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) redefined photography widening its meaning from an art to a powerful tool for social change. The three day?workshop organised by British Council and Drik India had Shahidul Alam, the eminent photographer and social activist from Bangladesh educating budding photographers of the city on the fine nuances of photography. The documentary photography workshop titled Photography for social impact ? To know, one must imagine was part of British Council?s Active Citizens programme. The workshop was about the right techniques to use camera as a tool for telling a story to create a social impact.
On the first day of the workshop participants were given an introduction to social documentary photography and its impact. It helped participants to interpret and create photographs that would stand out from the crowd and question the objectives of one?s perception and participation in the world we live in. The second day saw the review of the participants? photographs as they learnt the art of editing and presentation.
The concluding day witnessed the release of Shahidul Alam?s book, My Journey as a Witness, in the presence of ace photographer Nemai Ghosh. With the extensive launch session of his book, Alam took us through different pages of his life with the help of photographs. Each picture had an extraordinary story to tell. The stories changed his life at every point and gave momentum to his motto to bring a change in the society. He had been a witness but not a silent one to the changing social and political landscapes of Bangladesh. His photographs also narrated the grim tales of Kashmir and Sri Lanka.
Alam discussed the power of documenting photography and urged the participants and his audience to use it in the right spirit.
Review of “My journey as a witness” by John Morris
Please Retweet:??#Drikbooklaunch

Author: Shahidul Alam

Time Magazine Person of the Year 2018. A photographer, writer, curator and activist, Shahidul Alam obtained a PhD in chemistry before switching to photography. His seminal work “The Struggle for Democracy” contributed to the removal of General Ershad. Former president of the Bangladesh Photographic Society, Alam set up the Drik agency, Chobi Mela festival and Pathshala, South Asian Media Institute, considered one of the finest schools of photography in the world. Shown in MOMA New York, Centre Georges Pompidou, Royal Albert Hall and Tate Modern, Alam has been guest curator of Whitechapel Gallery, Winterthur Gallery and Musee de Quai Branly. His awards include Mother Jones, Shilpakala Award and Lifetime Achievement Award at the Dali International Festival of Photography. Speaker at Harvard, Stanford, UCLA, Oxford and Cambridge universities, TEDx, POPTech and National Geographic, Alam chaired the international jury of the prestigious World Press Photo contest. Honorary Fellow of Royal Photographic Society, Alam is visiting professor of Sunderland University in UK and advisory board member of National Geographic Society. John Morris, the former picture editor of Life Magazine describes his book “My journey as a witness”, (listed in “Best Photo Books of 2011” by American Photo), as “The most important book ever written by a photographer.”

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