A different lens: Photography with a mission by Vijay S Jodha

  • A series called The First Witnesses by photographer Vijay Jodha, 55, recently co-won the best photo series award given out as part of the British Journal of Photography’s Decade of Change initiative launched to use art to highlight the climate crisis. The black-and-white series features portraits of family members of Indian farmers who have died by suicide. In a classic frame-within-a-frame style, they hold up for the camera, and the world, photos of loved ones glaring out from behind garlanded frames. Some just hold up now-redundant passport-sized photos. Ten stills from the series were recently on display at the world’s first museum of climate change, in Hong Kong, and then at Climate Week NYC, an annual event held since 2009 to coincide with the UN General Assembly. Here’s a look at some of those images, and some of Jodha’s other work. 
Updated On Oct 15, 2021 08:29 AM IST 7 Photos
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Born to Perform: Part of a four-year-old and ongoing photo project shot in India and aboard with performing artists from 20 countries. Chinese ballet dancer Ma Li has one arm while Zhai Xiaowei has one leg but together they have performed all over the world.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Born to Perform: Part of a four-year-old and ongoing photo project shot in India and aboard with performing artists from 20 countries. Chinese ballet dancer Ma Li has one arm while Zhai Xiaowei has one leg but together they have performed all over the world.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Updated on Oct 15, 2021 08:29 AM IST
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Joys of Christmas: From a series on migrant itinerants selling inexpensive items in central Delhi during Christmas for tiny margins.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Joys of Christmas: From a series on migrant itinerants selling inexpensive items in central Delhi during Christmas for tiny margins.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Updated on Oct 15, 2021 08:29 AM IST
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Most of My Heroes: From an art project against mob violence. A series of poster-size faux stamps featuring forgotten victims of mob violence. Jaspal Singh was a baby murdered during the 1984 anti-Sikh violence. The zero value on the stamps indicates the value attached to such lost lives in India.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Most of My Heroes: From an art project against mob violence. A series of poster-size faux stamps featuring forgotten victims of mob violence. Jaspal Singh was a baby murdered during the 1984 anti-Sikh violence. The zero value on the stamps indicates the value attached to such lost lives in India.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Updated on Oct 15, 2021 08:29 AM IST
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Kashmir: Close to the Line of Control between India and Pakistan, a group of Kashmiri children try to spot their village on a globe gifted to their school by a visiting NGO.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Kashmir: Close to the Line of Control between India and Pakistan, a group of Kashmiri children try to spot their village on a globe gifted to their school by a visiting NGO.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Updated on Oct 15, 2021 08:29 AM IST
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V Mary holds up an image of her late father, Anthony Swamy. This is from the award-winning First Witnesses series that uses the frame-within-a-frame to memorialise Indian farmers who have died by suicide, and their loved ones.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

V Mary holds up an image of her late father, Anthony Swamy. This is from the award-winning First Witnesses series that uses the frame-within-a-frame to memorialise Indian farmers who have died by suicide, and their loved ones.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Updated on Oct 15, 2021 08:29 AM IST
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Ramesh Sundaram holds up an image of his late brother Kalyan Sundaram. Also from The First Witnesses. Jodha says his photography is a reflection of his legacy, a reference to the famine research conducted by his late father, agricultural economist NS Jodha, and referenced in books by economists such as Amartya Sen and Jean Drèze.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Ramesh Sundaram holds up an image of his late brother Kalyan Sundaram. Also from The First Witnesses. Jodha says his photography is a reflection of his legacy, a reference to the famine research conducted by his late father, agricultural economist NS Jodha, and referenced in books by economists such as Amartya Sen and Jean Drèze.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Updated on Oct 15, 2021 08:29 AM IST
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Vasanthi with an image of her late father. As the marginalised Indian farmer’s indebtedness and vulnerability to the vagaries of the monsoon are exacerbated by a growing climate crisis, Jodha says he wants to break fresh ground on the issue.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Vasanthi with an image of her late father. As the marginalised Indian farmer’s indebtedness and vulnerability to the vagaries of the monsoon are exacerbated by a growing climate crisis, Jodha says he wants to break fresh ground on the issue.(Photo: Vijay S Jodha)

Updated on Oct 15, 2021 08:29 AM IST
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Sunday, October 17, 2021