Nalini's first photogram titled Precincts, and has a linear structure, much like an architectural drawing. It was realized by placing different paper cut-outs and objects for a specific length of time under the enlarger on photosensitive bromide paper. The photograms became progressively complex, with different types of materials – opaque, translucent and transparent. Tonal nuances and minute variations were further achieved by ‘dodging’, a technique she learnt from her close friend, the artist Nasreen Mohamedi. From the final ‘photo’, a negative was made that was blown up to make the limited edition prints, which were for the first time exhibited in July 1970 at the Pundole Art Gallery in Bombay. These abstract-looking photograms were like the visionary blueprints of an ideal city plan for a modern India. These ideas were developed from the inspiring conversations with the architect Charles Correa at VIEW and her meeting with Buckminster Fuller.


  • Title: Photograms
  • Creator: Nalini Malani
  • Date Created: 1969-70
  • Location: Government College of Fine Arts, Chennai
  • Location Created: Chennai
  • Type: Photograph
  • Original Source: Artist Website
  • External Link: Chennai Photo Biennale website
  • Exhibition title: An unbearable lightness of being
  • Exhibition Description: A sense of dystopia, unease, maybe even giggly laughter, hysteria, melancholy, or even pictures of the unnoticed
  • CPB Edition: 2019
  • Artist's biography: For five decades, Nalini Malani has in her cutting-edge art addressed social, political and societal issues pertaining to the Indian subcontinent, including the abuse and rape of women, and the struggle for democracy. Starting out as a painter, and experimental photographer and filmmaker in 1969, Malani broke once again out of the classical painting frame in the late eighties to reach a wider audience, with immersive installations, theatre, ephemeral wall drawings, erasure performances and video/shadow plays

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