Anshika Varma

The Wall, 2020 –


Anshika Varma’s series The Wall explores the role of memory, the environment and urban planning in our cultural identity. Varma endeavours to explore the relationship between natural spaces and their occupants through the language of memory and love. This brought her to the Central Ridge, a forestscape very close to her childhood home.

The Ridge, a colonial term for the area locally known as pahaadi (hilly land), is a large forest and the lungs of the megacity New Delhi. For Varma, the forest is a space that gave her the power to fantasise and learn about cohabiting with its ecosystem. When the government built a seven-foot-high wall restricting access to the people of the city under the guise of forest protection, she picked up the camera as a form of protest. For every memory she had, she photographed a segment of the wall that had encroached upon her relationship with the forest.

This ongoing series, The Wall, combines photographs, close-ups, archival material, foraging, natural printmaking and drawings and invites the audience to rethink their encounters with nature and how this forms who we become.

Anshika Varma (b. 1985 in Delhi, India) lives and works in Delhi.

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