CITY OF PHOTOS DIRECTED BY NISHTHA JAIN; RAINTREE FILMS (INDIA, 2005, 60 MIN)
Exploring the little known ethos of neighborhood photo studios in India, the gritty urban reality of the city becomes a backdrop for the surreal props chosen by customers. Shabby studios, as full of surprises as the people who frequent them, afford fascinating glimpses into individual fantasies and popular culture. Yet beneath the novelty runs an undercurrent of foreboding. Computers restore the last remaining photographs of deceased family members; bloody police massacres are documented to gain government compensation; and for many of the poor, a portrait is a very expensive indulgence. As much about indian society as it is about photography.
SATYAJIT RAY: NEGATIVES DIRECTED BY BO VAN DER WERF; NEON ROUGE PRODUCTIONS (BELGIUM, 2005, 50 MIN)
Nemai Ghosh photographed film director Satyajit Ray 90,000 times. His candid black and white pictures capture the working process of india’s greatest filmmaker in every phase of production. Remarkably, Ghosh himself was left to care for his aging negatives, as neither government nor private sector is interested in preserving the national treasure that is his archives. In this film, Ghosh reflects upon his great passion for picturing “the master at work.”