Title: Mr. Malhotra's Party: Photographing queer virtual space in Delhi.
In the 1980's I worked on constructed documentary images of anonymous gay men in architectural spaces in Delhi (Exiles series). In today’s India, homosexuals are lurking less in parks, and more on the net, and inhabit spaces like “private” parties. Gay nights at local clubs in Delhi are always sign-posted as private parties in a fictitious person's name to get around Section 377, a British colonial law which still criminalizes homosexuality in India.
With these images, I am trying to visualize this latest virtual queer space through a series of portraits of real people who identify their sexuality as 'queer' in some way. This time people look straight into the camera and we see around them aspects of todays of urban New Delhi. This time they are willing to identify themselves. They are guests of an imaginary party, which I have called "Mr. Malhotra's Party, named after the ubiquitous Punjabi refugee who arrived post-partition and contributed to the development of New Delhi.
This series has been shown as part of "Street & Studio", Tate Modern, London 2008.