Rakib Ahmed talks about old photography in the new age | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 02, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, September 02, 2019

Rakib Ahmed talks about old photography in the new age

An art talk, featuring fine art photographer and cameraman Rakib Ahmed was held at 3rd Space in Dhanmondi, recently. In the age of digital manipulations, Ahmed continues to use the age-old practice of Wet Collodion in his work to produce images. Wet Collodion is an early photography technique that involves the use of chemicals, solutions and coating a glass plate with the mixture to develop photographs quickly. The event was hosted by Arafat Ahmed Ali. 

At the talk, along with a presentation of his images and videos, Ahmed also showcased the vintage camera that he uses. The artiste sources his materials from various places, though he said that it is incredibly difficult to find most products in Bangladesh. However, since he has been in this practice for decades, he knows exactly what he needs. Well versed in the chemical compositions of photography materials, sometimes Ahmed is able to identify what he needs by simply smelling things, since often, the products are sold by different names.

During the event, Ahmed talked about the inspirations behind his images, as they were shown to the audience in a slideshow. In an informal setting, the viewers also felt encouraged to join the conversation, as they asked questions and expressed their feelings about particular images.

It is not that Ahmed does not choose to incorporate modern and contemporary techniques. In fact, what makes his work interesting is that he often juxtaposes digital imagery and prints them in traditional formats. Since technology has made everything so much easier in terms of photography, Ahmed believes that people no longer give adequate importance to every detail associated with the process of creating an image.

Ahmed received his Bachelor of Social Science in Photography from Pathshala South Asian Media Institute. Among other exhibitions, he has participated in Dhaka International Film Festival (2017). He was a Samdani Art Award Finalist in 2018 and has held his own solo show at Britto Arts Trust in 2017. 

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