Dayanita Singh, Dream Villa 11, 2007, 2008, C-print, 18 1/8 x 18 1/8". From the series “Dream Villas,” 2007–10.


“Dayanita Singh: Go Away Closer”

Hayward Gallery
Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road
October 8–December 15

Curated by Stephanie Rosenthal

Dayanita Singh’s largest survey to date will feature a broad selection of the New Delhi–based photographer’s work, ranging from her 1989–2001 photo-essay about her friendship with a eunuch, Myself Mona Ahmed, to her balefully tinted “Blue Book” series, 2008, as well as seven wooden “portable museums” freshly fabricated for this show. In the last, Singh’s long association with archives—the decaying files and musty volumes that, like museums, acknowledge the irretrievability of the very past they preserve—has come full circle. These large works resemble giant open books, and each is dedicated to a suite of a hundred-odd theme-based photographs depicting, for example, furniture, textiles, or “chance.” As temporary monuments, Singh’s movable structures remind us that the further from history we attempt to travel, the more closely it enfolds us.