In this session Moranngam Khaling (the founder of Headhunters Ink and Godna Gram: The Tattoo Village),Viren Swami (Professor of Social Psychology, Anglia Ruskin University) and Sanjukta Basu (photographer of the Women with Tattoos series) in conversation with Prachi Gupta (Archivist at MAP, Bangalore) look at the cultural appropriation of tribal motifs and unpack the changing nature of contemporary tattoo culture in India from a subversive act to a socially acceptable form of self-expression.
In collaboration with Museum of Art & Photography
Moranngam Khaling (popularly known by his artist name MO NAGA) is an independent researcher and revivalist of traditional art & craft and the design culture of North East India.Mo Naga did his Bachelor of Design from NIFT (National Institute of Fashion Technology, Hyderabad) and is the founder and practicing scholar at Headhunters Ink-Guwahati, with the focus in the study and preservation of traditional Naga Tattoos. He also founded Godna Gram- the tattoo village in 2016 in New Delhi. Godna Gram is an initiative for the study and preservation and promotion of the rich tattoo tradition of India, conceptualised as a professional platform for indigenous tattoo artists from all regions of India to train and share traditional knowledge and skills with the rest of the world.
Viren Swami is Professor of Social Psychology at Anglia Ruskin University and Director of the Centre for Psychological Research at Perdana University. His research is focused on body image, body art, and mental health. He is the author of over two hundred academic papers and three books, including Attraction Explained (now in its second edition) and The Psychology of Physical Attraction.
Sanjukta Basu is a writer, photographer, lawyer, feminist scholar. She has worked as Communications Consultant for non profits working on women rights, held a legal practice, and has been a Columnist on various print and online media such as Firstpost, HuffPost India, Daily O, India Times, The Wire, among others. She is presently with National Herald as Editorial Consultant. She writes on women, politics, minority rights, and social issues. She is also pursuing a PhD on Women and Gender Studies. The auto-ethnographic doctoral research deals with gender based trolling of Indian women, radical right politics and women’s political participation. She is one of India’s rare group of feminist photographers who use the camera to challenge gender stereotypes.
Prachi Gupta is an Archivist at the Museum of Art & Photography (MAP), Bangalore. She handles the photography collection that ranges from the 1850s to the current time with a number of one lakh plus objects. The position entails tasks related to archiving, cataloguing, research, and exhibitions. Previous to the current job, she was freelancing in the field of graphic design, fashion illustrations and photography. She completed her Masters in Photography Design from the National Institute of Design, Gandhinagar in 2018 and has been living and working in Bangalore since. Her artistic interest lies in history, archives and performance, which she continues to explore through her work.