The sea and the tree-lined shore against a lush green forest. The house, the forms, the people; reminiscent of a dream, taking me back to the small town of Dapoli, where my journey began. An eagerness to pursue art as a career encouraged me to move away from home, to Pune and then NID, in Ahmedabad. After eight or nine years I began to reconnect with my hometown, reliving my memories and finding inspiration in this reconciliation. That’s when I met Mr. Subhash Kolekar. This was a shift in my perception that I was the only one from this town who had a passion for the arts. Kolekar shared stories of Dapoli’s culture, the rituals, myths and mysteries, the stories of the people. He showed me everything that had been archived and shared his photographic processes with me. Kolekar’s motto in his work was ‘Keep it simple’, which I thought was a distinctive voice in today’s contemporary world of art. “DAPOLI” is my attempt to represent this reconnection with my home, Dapoli, along with Subhash Kolekar’s knowledge and archives. It is a juxtaposition of what is ancient and what is modern Dapoli, through photography, film, and other Moving away from home to pursue my career, strengthened my fascination to document this sleepy, secretive town, the atmosphere is best captured. As a new start in Dapoli based photographer Subhash Kolekar’s home - a humble space with a treasure trove of knowledge. I had come across Mr. Kolekar in an attempt to learn more about this elusive craft barely anyone else in town had any experience in and was introduced to his impressive archive of work. Mr. Kolekar had spent almost his whole life in Dapoli. He would travel to villages riding his old Rajdoot bike to photograph any events and celebrations taking place, which led to more intimate portraiture of the people he would meet. through Mr. Kolekar’s work I understood the importance of collective knowledge, and of how a photograph is not the photographer’s sole property - it belongs to the subject, the subject’s family, and to every element that has shaped both subject and the photographer as well. This project is a representation of my connection with my home. His work breathes life into Dapoli even today. To carry this baton, I have captured the current daily scenario of Dapoli. The process led me to discover various surprises, as well as tackling my fears and biases associated with certain memories. This project is a gentle re- minder of how our homes take up space not only geographically but also belongs to a place in time

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DAPOLI by Abhishek K

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