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Artists & Curators

Curator & Professor, Jamia Millia Islamia, Delhi
Curator & Former Director and Professor in History, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta

Date & Time

Wed, 18 Oct 2023 Wed, 25 Oct 2023


Bangalore International Centre
7, 4th Main Road, Domlur II Stage
Bangalore, Karnataka 560071 India

Twin Sisters with Cameras | Exhibition on Show
18 October, Wednesday, 6:30 pm – Exhibition Opening | On till 25 October, Wednesday, 10 am to 8 pm

The exhibition Twin Sisters with Cameras explores the photographic lives of the twin sisters Debalina Mazumder (1919 – 2012) and Manobina Roy (1919 – 2001). Their practice encompassed a range of subjects and genres, joint experiments with light and shadow in 1930s Ramnagar (Benaras) giving way to striking portraits of family and friends in and around their homes in Calcutta and Bombay and distinctive glimpses of 1960s Europe.

Curated by Sabeena Gadihoke, Mallika Leuzinger and Tapati Guha-Thakurta.

The Curious and Cosmopolitan Worlds of Amateur Photography | Two talks by Sabeena Gadihoke and Mallika Leuzinger
19 October, Thursday | 6:30 pm to 8 pm

The talks by curators Sabeena Gadihoke and Mallika Leuzinger will delve into the photographic worlds of the sisters Debalina Mazumder and Manobina Roy. Through a focus on particular images, and interviews with the sisters and those who knew them, the talks excavate the rich histories of amateur photography.

Curatorial Walkthrough by Sabeena Gadihoke and Mallika Leuzinger
20 October, Friday, 5 pm
21 October, Saturday, 11:30 am and 5 pm
22 October, Sunday, 11:30 am

Image Captions:
Thumbnail image – Debalina Sen Roy and Manobina Roy, by Bimal Roy, c.1940.
Header image – Debalina Majumdar c. 1964 (on the right). Bimal Roy, Manobina Roy with a camera, Calcutta, 1940 (on the left).

In collaboration with CREA and Jadunath Bhavan Museum and Resource Centre, a unit of the CSSSC


Supported by PhotoSouthAsia, an initiative of the MurthyNAYAK Foundation

Artists & Curators

Late Manobina Roy


Manobina Roy (1919 – 2001) lived at different homes in south Calcutta during the 1940s. She and her husband Bimal Roy moved to Bombay after he left New Theatres in Calcutta and entered the Hindi film industry. Their home on Mount Mary Road, Bandra, was known as the Godiwala Bungalow. They had four children.

As Mrs. Bimal Roy, she remained in the shadow of her famous husband as she participated actively in his public life and in his tours abroad. Photography remained her steadfast passion when she travelled with him to London, Paris, Athens and Moscow and encountered several famous personalities of the time in
Delhi and Bombay. Her flair for writing alongside her photography is seen in the articles she wrote for the Illustrated Weekly and Femina, and in the handwritten memoirs of 1997 she left behind for her children and grandchildren.

Late Debalina Mazumder


Debalina Mazumder (1919 – 2012) and her husband settled into what remains the family’s present home in New Alipore in 1974. She had five children. Like her twin, Debalina kept up her passion for photographs in the midst of domesticity and family life. She used the occasions of their family holidays to indulge in landscape photography, and with Manobina turned to street photography during their joint trip abroad in 1959.

In her later years, she became a part of professional associations. In 1980, she served as Chairperson of the Photography Association of Bengal (PAB) for three years. She was also the Honorary Secretary of the UPAPA, and a member of the Ladies Forum of the Federation of Indian Photography (FIP), which published a magazine called Viewfinder.

Sabeena Gadihoke

Curator & Professor, Jamia Millia Islamia, Delhi

Sabeena Gadihoke is Professor at the AJK Mass Communication Research Centre, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi. She started her career as an independent documentary filmmaker and cameraperson and has written a book on India’s first woman press photographer Homai Vyarawalla. She writes about the still and moving image with a particular focus on mid 20th century photo history and has curated several photo shows.

Mallika Leuzinger


Mallika Leuzinger is a Fellow in Colonial and Global History at the German Historical Institute London. Her research explores popular practices of photography and, more recently, of archiving and doing history, based on which she is putting together the monograph Dwelling in Photography: Intimacy, Amateurism and the Camera in South Asia.

Tapati Guha-Thakurta

Curator & Former Director and Professor in History, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta

Tapati Guha-Thakurta was a student of history at Presidency College, Calcutta and Calcutta University. She did her D.Phil. from the History Faculty, University of Oxford. Her work is located within the disciplinary fields of cultural history, history of art and visual studies. She has written widely and taught courses on themes such as nationalism and modernity, the institutional practices and political locations of art history and archaeology, the careers of monuments and museum objects, and popular urban visual culture of modern and contemporary India. Her three main books are The Making of a New ‘Indian’ Art: Artists, Aesthetics and Nationalism in Bengal (Cambridge University Press, 1992), Monuments, Objects, Histories: Institutions of Art in Colonial and Postcolonial India (Columbia University Press, and Permanent Black, 2004), and In the Name of the Goddess: The Durga Pujas of Contemporary Kolkata (Delhi: Primus Books, 2015).