Chennai: Conceived as a city biennale, Chennai Photography Biennale's primary goal is to bring Chennai into its fold by engaging different communities and generations through exhibitions, workshops and educational programs.
The second edition of the Chennai Photography Biennale was launched at the University of Madras on February 21, with exhibitions across the city featuring 50 artistes from 14 countries. “In a globalised world, where the photographic image has transformed from its primary objective of representation, depiction and documentation to become a measure of identity and self-worth, it becomes imperative to reassess its purpose, its potential and its power to impact the human mind and decision making,” believe the people behind Chennai Photography Biennale. Aiming to mark Chennai on the international map of photography by demystifying the different genres of photography for the common man, Chennai Photography Biennale holds large scale exhibitions in unexpected public spaces such as fishing harbours, abandoned factories, walking promenades, beaches, temple areas, popular cultural spots and educational institutions.
The second edition of the biennale is themed ‘Fauna of Mirrors,’ which is based on an old Chinese myth that talks about an alternate universe behind the mirror. The artistic director, renowned sculptor and artist Pushpamala N. says that the biennale seeks to explain the field of photography with a terrific array of photo-artists.
“They use the language of photography to speak to the work. Set in important historical and contemporary venues across the city, the Biennale will be a thought-provoking,” Pushpamala says.
As part of the biennale, the Chennai Photography Biennale Foundation initiated the CPB programme which ran phone photography workshops with over 265 school children and an advanced workshop with 25 selected students whose work is being showcased at the biennale.