Nearly half a century after he left his native Tanzania, Pradip Malde returned with a large-format camera to document the lives of women affected by female genital mutilation and cutting (FGM/C). With Sarah Mwaga, founder of the Anti Female Genital Mutilation Network (AFNET), he traveled more than 3,000 miles over three years, visiting remote communities to converse with and photograph activist women —victims of FGM and former ngariba (Swahili for “circumcisers”)—, the sacred sites where these rituals take place, and the cutting tools used by ngariba who have renounced the practice.
“So much pain goes covered, and I want your photographs to provide an eye, another way of opening what is felt in isolation,” said Sarah Mwaga as they worked together during the Summer of 2016 in Tanzania.
From Where Loss Comes is an uncanny collection of texts in English and Swahili and photographs that ruminates on the sacriﬁce and loss required to be part of any community. It demands that we take it personally, because, as Malde puts it, FGM/C “ultimately harms the community and threatens the human and environmental condition. For this reason, if no other, it matters that men, just as much as women, care about FGM/C and the ﬁght against it.”
“This book is to be held, discussed, attended to. I hope that it is this kind of sustained attention that builds sufﬁcient energy for us to excavate the links between loss and love, and begin to answer perpetual questions about what it is to be human” he writes in the foreword.
Malde received a John Simon Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship in 2018 to complete the project. From Where Loss Comes is dedicated to the life and work of Sarah Mwaga, who passed away in 2021 just as the book was in its ﬁnal stages of production.
About Pradip Malde
Pradip Malde is a photographer and professor at the University of the South, Sewanee, TN, where he is the co-director of the Haiti Institute. Much of his work considers the experience of loss and how it serves as a catalyst for regeneration. He is currently working in rural communities in Haiti, Tanzania, and Tennessee, designing models for community development through photography.
Malde was born in Arusha, Tanzania in 1957. His parents were the children of Indians who emigrated to East Africa but had to ﬂee from the turmoil that spread through that region in the 1970s. Concerned about loss and belonging since then, he has come to think of artifacts as membranes, where what may be explicit and immutable begins to lead us into the realms of memory and meaning, and ultimately, understanding the experiences of others.
His works are held in the collections of the Museum of the Art Institute, Chicago; Princeton University Museum; Victoria & Albert Museum, London, Yale University Museum, and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh, among others. He is a 2018 Guggenheim Fellow.
Pradip Malde : From Where Loss Comes
Photographs and texts by Pradip Malde
Published by Charcoal Press Publication
Hardcover, Embossed linen
92 pages / 60 b&w photographs Texts in English and Swahili
10 x 14 inches
Retail: $75 (US) / $95 (CAD) / €68 / £58
Signed Copies $85 (US) / $110 (CAD) / €78 / £65
Edition of 30
Signed and numbered on the reverse
One of two numbered platinum prints (each edition of 15), handmade by the artist Retail: $1200 (US)
More information on www.charcoalpress.com