Vinay Ghodgeri is a visual artist based in India who works across photography, painting and film. He has spent many years shooting documentary and street photography. His recent experiments have been with atmospheric dream-like images with surreal overtones, infusing bodies and landscapes with emotional or metaphoric significance, uprooting figures from reality and opening them to memory or metaphysics.
Tell us where your from / where your based and about living there?
Me and my family are from the city of Pune, near the commercial capital of India, Mumbai. I studied English Literature in Pune, Design and Film in Bangalore and then followed projects around India and Europe. I am currently based in Goa, living in a hamlet across some fields, a respite from the city, to follow my painting and writing works.
How did you get into photography?
In my youth, photography became my way of exploring the city first, then the country, searching for a way to understand and record the Pandora’s box of Indian life, that I could witness. In design school, I came to be greatly inspired by Cartier Bressons idea of the ‘kairos’, the decisive moment being especially pertinent in the chaotic Indian streets. The aspect of looking for an imagined potential, then waiting patiently for possibilities to emerge and capture an essence, greatly excited me. Now I have moved on to construct moods, ideas, narratives with photography.
You also do painting and film, we would love to learn a little about these projects?
What began with sketching turned into detailed penworks (painted with saturated drawing inks) attempting to create an Imaginarium of personal mythology, using symbology and surrealism. I have made a fiction short film on a sacrificial ritual that still exists near my native village and an experimental film that is the imagined memory of an old mans memory of his own birth, death and journey to an afterlife, using surreal imagery. I am currently working on expanding the experiment into larger, more narrative works.
How did you come about the dark style you do in your photography work?
I have always been drawn to and experienced melancholy, nightmare and the liminal spaces between becomings and unbecomings. There is the dark side of the moon in the chaos of being, the concave corners we incessantly attempt to escape, little creatures of the subconscious darting from our vision. It has the sensual, even erotic charge of a serpentine labyrinth. It is this dimly lit space I have attempted to follow.
If you weren’t living in India and could be based anywhere in the world where would it be and why?
Although I would love to travel across the continents and discover new cultures, India is where I would live or return to, a land with a panoply of realms.
What are you shooting with, and what are you using to do your cross processing?
This series has been shot with a Canon 7D and some images have been digitally composited.
If there is anything your working on at current you can share with us?
As of now I am working on a series of penwork paintings, an imagination around birth and babyhood. I am also collating ideas for a short experimental film based in Goa.
Where can we find you online?
For both photography and artwork :