Love a good picture? Head to the Hyderabad Centre for Photography right away

What's in store for budding young photographers at the recently inaugurated Hyderabad Centre for Photography at the State Art Gallery? Let's find out
They have faith: From Kusuma's photo series Destitutes | (Pic: HCP)
They have faith: From Kusuma's photo series Destitutes | (Pic: HCP)

If one wants to admire paintings, they make their way to museums. Music aficionados book themselves tickets to the latest concerts should they feel the need to indulge in a musical extravaganza. A dance event is never too far for those who want to appreciate performance art. But what about those who value good photography? Where do they go? (And no, Instagram pictures don't count!). We don't know about your city, but if you're in the City of Nizams, you can always drop by the State Gallery of Art as this state-owned gallery now has a dedicated space for photography exhibitions, workshops, talks and so much more. 

Traditional beginnings: Chief Secretary to the Govt.of Telangana, SK Joshi lighting the lamp at HCP | (Pic: HCP)

Called the Hyderabad Centre for Photography (HCP), this space is a not-for-profit initiative of the Lightcraft Foundation in strategic partnership with the State Gallery of Art. Lightcraft Foundation is the same organisation that organises one of Hyderabad's calendar events, the Indian Photography Festival (IPF). So, it made sense for the organisation whose aim is to promote the photographic arts to start a centre like this. Establishing our point, Festival Director of IPF, Aquin Mathews, says, "There are a handful of galleries in India which are dedicated to photography. Also, we understood that there is a strong community of photographers in Hyderabad, thanks to IPF. So, we wanted to do something for them year-round." HCP was inaugurated on January 25 with their first event, an exhibition dedicated to ace photographer late Prabhakar Kusuma. 

Love photography, but not aware of the upcoming genres? Aquin Mathews feels that conservative photography, travel photography and astrophotography are upcoming fields

So, what do youngsters and budding photographers get to do at HCP? The plan of action is to organise more and more exhibitions, talks (BAFTA-nominated Dr Michael Yorke recently spoke on the topic Understand Others - Visual Anthropology: Archives and Tribal Identity), seminars, workshops and more. "The aim is to inspire, learn and create," says Mathews. All these formal forums will help advance the interests of the photographers in the city to a great extent and help them distinguish a good photograph from the "visual clutter" (as Mathews calls it) that we live in. And though he appreciates the existing photography scene in Hyderabad, resplendent with clubs and societies dedicated to this art form, he feels that, "HCP can take it a step further in terms of helping them with their creative voice."

In admiration: Guests at the exhibition | (Pic: HCP)

Mathews believes that this is the best time for photographers, thanks to the technological advancements, and feels that all of us, including phone camera-wielding 'photographers', must make the most of it. What about filters and apps which automatically make one look like a pro photographer? "Well, manipulative software have always existed. They can enhance a good photograph, but they cannot make a bad photograph good," says Mathews. The same goes for photographers, we suppose. All said and done, HCP is certainly a welcome addition to the photography scene of Hyderabad.

Here's what they had to say -

The gallery has been at the forefront for promoting Art and giving exposure to the local talent. This (HCP) will be a great opportunity for photographers and photography lovers

Dr K Lakshmi, Director, State Art Gallery

Photography has become a universal language and people need the right platforms to engage with the visual artform. It has more followers than any other art form. I hope HCP will help people take their passion to the next level

B Venkatesham, Secretary to Government of Telangana Youth Advancement, Tourism and Cultural Department

Some of late Prabhakar Kusuma's work

Moment captured: From Kusuma's photo series called The Village Life | (Pic: HCP)

In the making: Women from the Lambada tribe cooking | (Pic: HCP)

In her hands: From Kusuma's photo series called Destitutes | (Pic: HCP)

In prayer: From Kusuma's photo series called Faith | (Pic: HCP)

For more on them, click on

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