About this artwork
Balika Mela, or “a fair for girls,” is held annually in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Attended by around 1500 adolescent girls from the town of Lunkarasar and surrounding villages, the fair raises awareness of difficulties for women in these communities. In 2003, Gauri Gill set up a photo studio and invited the young women to “portray themselves, as they are, or as they see themselves, or to invent new selves for the camera.” Gill’s portraits convey a hesitant fortitude; the subjects are unaccustomed to such attention. Gill was subsequently invited to teach the girls photography in workshops held at the fair.
- Gauri Gill
- Indian Union
- Made 2003
- Inkjet print, from the series "Balika Mela"
- 63 × 42 inches
- Gift of Meredith and Akhil Sharma