Dayanita Singh

INDIAN CONTEMPORARY ARTIST
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- Born 1961, New Delhi, India 
- Lives and works in New Delhi, India 
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UNDERSTANDING THE ARTIST
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It started off as an accident that Dayanita Singh was asked to shoot Zakir Hussain after a brief untoward encounter at a concert of the tabla maestro while she was on a graduate project. This was the turning point for her when she decided to take up photography. 
She has an overwhelming inclination towards taking black and white photographs rather than coloured ones. The black and white images coupled with texts create a dialogue between image and text, and the ordering of images forms the narratives in the books. Her assertion about finding muses away from photography also found resonance with this first project with music being a thread through these images. 
She says, “... it is extremely difficult to shoot in colour, to find a language of one’s own that is not determined by what exists.” With black and white images, there is a certain freedom of expressivity that she manages to capture. She is also acutely aware and knowledgeable on the different tonalities that she would want along with the kind of prints like the silver gelatine print while producing her prints in the laboratory. However, she has also marked her photographic intensity and fervour with highly saturated coloured images in one or two of her projects.  
Fascinated by the archives and their presentation in rows and columns of cupboards in the bureaucratic offices, Dayanita has also reassigned her exhibitionary vision accordingly. For the display of her works, she creates structures and cases that resemble actual cupboards. Dayanita very consciously and particularly marks her identity as a bookmaker whose medium is photography. Her artistic practice transcends beyond the medium and embodies that of a visual storyteller instead. For her, all her artistic muses stem from cinema, literature and music, and not necessarily from photography itself. 
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SELECTED IMAGES
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Dayanita Singh, Privacy, 2004, from the book Privacy, with texts by Dayanita Singh and Britta Scmitz, 128 pages, 90 tritone plates, 20 cm x 24 cm, clothbound hardcover with dust jacket
Dayanita Singh, Privacy, 2004, from the book Privacy, with texts by Dayanita Singh and Britta Scmitz, 128 pages, 90 tritone plates, 20 cm x 24 cm, clothbound hardcover with dust jacket

 

Dayanita Singh, Privacy, 2004, 128 pages book, clothbound hardcover with dust jacket, 7.8 x 9.4”. From the book Privacy, with texts by Dayanita Singh and Britta Scmitz
Dayanita Singh, Privacy, 2004, 128 pages book, clothbound hardcover with dust jacket, 7.8 x 9.4”. From the book Privacy, with texts by Dayanita Singh and Britta Scmitz

 

Dayanita Singh, Privacy  2004, from the book Privacy,  with texts by Dayanita Singh and Britta Scmitz, 128 pages, 90  tritone plates, 20 cm x 24 cm, clothbound hardcover with dust jacket
Dayanita Singh, Privacy  2004, from the book Privacy,  with texts by Dayanita Singh and Britta Scmitz, 128 pages, 90  tritone plates, 20 cm x 24 cm, clothbound hardcover with dust jacket

 

Dayanita Singh, House of Love, 2011, from the book House of Love, 172 page
Dayanita Singh, House of Love, 2011, from the book House of Love, 172 page

 

Dayanita Singh, Go Away Closer, 2007, 32 pages book triton plated, 6.2 x 7.8. From the book Go Away Closer
Dayanita Singh, Go Away Closer, 2007, 32 pages book triton plated, 6.2 x 7.8. From the book Go Away Closer

 

Dayanita Singh, House of Love, 2011, 172 pages book, Radius Books and Peabody Museum Press, 6.25 x 9.75 in ;  From the book House of Love
Dayanita Singh, House of Love, 2011, 172 pages book, Radius Books and Peabody Museum Press, 6.25 x 9.75 in ;  From the book House of Love

 

Dayanita Singh, File Room, 2013, 88 pages book; From the book File Room
Dayanita Singh, File Room, 2013, 88 pages book; From the book File Room

 

Dayanita Singh, Dream Villa, 2010, 136 pages book, four colour plates, 3.9 x 7.8”. From the book Dream Villa
Dayanita Singh, Dream Villa, 2010, 136 pages book, four colour plates, 3.9 x 7.8”. From the book Dream Villa

 

Dayanita Singh, Chairs, 2005, set of 22 tritones, 3.54 x 5.5. From the series Chairs
Dayanita Singh, Chairs, 2005, set of 22 tritones, 3.54 x 5.5. From the series Chairs

 

Dayanita   Singh, Myself Mona Ahmed  2001, 176  pages book tritone  plated  Scalo Publishers 7.9 x 7 x 0.6 in; From the book  Myself Mona Ahmed
Dayanita Singh, Myself Mona Ahmed 2001, 176 pages book tritone  plated Scalo Publishers 7.9 x 7 x 0.6 in; From the book Myself Mona Ahmed

 

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