4 March 2014
Last updated at 03:24
India's Tasveer Arts in collaboration with Cinnamon is holding an exhibition in Delhi of vintage photographs of women, taken between the 1850s and 1950s. These include studio portraits, film stills, post cards and other promotional material. This is a studio portrait of an unknown woman reclining on a chaise longue in 1880.
These photographs take us on a "journey from colonial studies of Indian women in the 19th Century, to private studio portraits from the early 20th Century, and then to iconic and glamorous photographs of Bollywood actresses from the 1940s and 50s", says a note on show. This is a picture of a group of women, possibly in Bengal, in 1900.
"The dramatic development and growth of print, photographic and cinematic culture through the late 19th and early 20th Centuries radically transformed the representation and circulation of the female image" in India, the note says. This is a picture of a group of women in Rajasthan in 1920.
"The female form entered the public sphere in India through a variety of visual culture that inundated colonial modernity - in portraiture, and studio images, in newspapers, magazines, commercial and advertising imagery, posters, film and theatre bills," says the note. This portrait of an Indian woman was taken in 1880.
"Photography and film evolved distinctive strategies for the presentation of the female body, such as lingering close-ups, seductive frontal displays, luxuriating reclining figures, women bathing or set against imaginative and romanticised European-inspired landscapes," the note says. This is a picture of a Muslim dancing girl, shot in 1900.
The photographs in the show are "divided into five distinct sections, investigating the social and cultural status of women within a variety of spaces in the colonial context," the note says. This is a picture of a group of Marathi women in 1875.
A woman carrying a pot, 1870.
A group of Parsee women in 1900.
A portrait of Maharani Gayatri Devi, princess of the Indian princely state of Jaipur, 1945.
A promotional picture of actress Vyjayanthimala in the film Pehli Jhalak, 1955.
A portrait of popular Bollywood actress Nargis from 1960.