Recently, a friend gifted me with a box of old negatives he found while cleaning out his late father’s half – century old photography studio in the town of Thrissur, Kerala (a state southern India). His father was a prominent portrait photographer who worked with 2 ¼ film in the 1960’s. I curiously opened the box only to find the negatives damaged beyond recognition by time and humidity. Although I initially did not consider them worthy of further exploration, it occurred to me that in their deteriorated state they had not only a story to tell but an aesthetic conceptual appeal unto themselves. Their individual faces may be lost to oblivion, but the vague image of their ethos remains.
Unni Krishnan Pulikkal