Kolkata

Naeem Mohaiemen, Rankin Street, 1953, 2013, video, black-and-white, sound, 8 minutes.

Naeem Mohaiemen, Rankin Street, 1953, 2013, video, black-and-white, sound, 8 minutes.

Naeem Mohaiemen

EXPERIMENTER, Hindusthan Road

Families, if you look closely enough, tell the big histories. In 2010, Naeem Mohaiemen found a small cardboard box as he cleared things from the old family home in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Inside, he discovered wrapped in wax paper more than a hundred negatives, carefully labeled in his father’s handwriting. These images became the subject of Mohaiemen’s film Rankin Street, 1953, 2013, where he shows us the photographs and provides narration. This year, he revisited these images with a suite of transfer prints, Baksho Rohoshyo (Chobi Tumi Kar?) (Mystery Box [Photo, Who Do You Love?]), 2019, made from drawings of the photographs he’d done by hand.

Naeem’s father, Mohammad Abdul Mohaiemen, liked to photograph cats and cousins, and he rarely took his camera out of the house. In most of the pictures, which he took in 1953 in Dhaka, then in the newly formed East Pakistan, everything happens indoors:

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and receive the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the December 2019 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.