CDS Artist’s Residency with Photographer Chandan Gomes

An image of the artist, Chandan Gomes.

Delhi-based photographer Chandan Gomes will be in residence at Duke’s Center for Documentary Studies (CDS) September 24–28, 2019. Public events with Gomes will be at the Rubenstein Arts Center.

The residency is part of a programming and curricular initiative, "Imaginary Landscapes: Teacher-Students-Artists,” by Center for Documentary Studies undergraduate education director Christopher Sims and Literacy Through Photography director Katie Hyde and is funded by the Duke India Initiative.

Sims and Hyde describe the project as “a series of workshops and exhibits at Duke and in Kolkata and Delhi, India, that will explore themes common in our work as documentary photographers and educators: landscapes and the imagination of children. Our project will invite and include the participation of faculty and students in each location to create their own work alongside those of the workshop facilitators and artists, with each exhibit and workshop adding new perspectives and strategies for the next iteration.”

Public events with Chandan Gomes at the Rubenstein Arts Center:

Thursday, September 26

6 to 7 p.m. This World of Dew pop-up exhibition and reception

Join Chandan Gomes for a pop-up exhibition of work from an artist book, This World of Dew, he made in collaboration with Aini Hasina Bano. The project is a soliloquy on loss and remembrance—a young child’s yearning for the mountains and a photographer’s search for that child, whose nameless drawing book he found abandoned in a hospice in Jaipur, India. (The This World of Dew pop-up exhibit will also be on view at the Rubenstein’s Arts Open House on Saturday, September 28, 6–8 p.m.)

7 to 8:15 p.m. Artist’s talk, “Working From Memory”

In this world
We walk on the roof of hell
Gazing at flowers

—Kobayashi Issa 

“The photographs that emerge as a response to the above haiku are not a part of any specific work or project that I have undertaken, but of life itself – my practice originates in the tradition of documentary photography and is best represented by the hand-made or the artist book. I do not work on projects in a focused way, but photograph whatever gets my curiosity or leads me to questions that I wish to engage with. These photographs represent the last five years of my life, in which I have dealt with themes of violence, mental illness, my mother’s tryst with memory loss and my grandmother’s struggle with dementia, amongst other things.” —Chandan Gomes

Saturday, September 28

2–4 p.m. DukeCreate Workshop (Special Topic): “The Forgotten Archive” Book-Making Workshop

Join in this special workshop taught by visiting artist Chandan Gomes. Gomes is a photographer and bookmaker based in Delhi, India. Participants will create handmade artist books utilizing photographic images.

“For me, bookmaking emerges from the personal archive, which becomes the locus of all stories, explorations, and questions that I wish to share or engage with as an artist. The workshop will focus on book-building from the aforementioned perspective and will invite the participants to investigate their photographic practices and lives to create book objects that are intensely personal and yet build a dialogue between the self and the other.” —Chandan Gomes