Art Show in Kolkata by Beth A Payne

Kolkata, June 13 (Calcutta Tube / IBNS): For US Consul General in Kolkata Beth A Payne, there is no better farewell tribute to West Bengal than gift a collection of images she captured in the past years of her assignment in the region.

Turning her childhood passion for photography into a meaningful pastime while posted in Kolkata, the outgoing Consul General has captured Bengal and its people in its myriad moods and splendor.
Now the American Center in association with the Harrington Street Arts Centre has organised an exhibition as a befitting farewell gift to Beth A Payne, who will bid goodbye to the city very soon.
The exhibition- Face of Bengal- flaunts photographs taken by the Consul General portraying different shades of culture and lives of West Bengal.
Inaugurated on June 10, the opening evening saw famous painter Jogen Chowdhury, fashion designer Agnimitra Paul, industrialist Sundeep Bhutoria and actor Churni Ganguly gracing the event.

“The beauty and the art of the State attracted me very much, and these photographs will reveal my love for the region and the people,” she said.

Payne said photography had been a natural outlet for her since her childhood days as being a shy girl she had always preferred to be behind the camera instead of being in front of it.

“Photography is a way to I choose to connect with people, I capture their emotions and feelings and in this manner develop an attachment with them,” Payne added.

If photography had been a passion in her early years then it transformed to a source of relief and healing much later when she struggled to recover from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of a  hotel bombing incident during her posting in Iraq.

A resident of Pennsylvania, Payne joined the office as the Consul General in July 2008 in Kolkata and had developed an interest for the people and culture of West Bengal since then.

Kolkata had always been special to her and had been a source of constant inspiration to her photography ventures which is clearly represented in her own words,” Kolkata has by far been my favorite city for street photography, with its many boulevards, avenues and alleys teeming with activity, color and wonderful light.”

It is her fascination with women of Bengal that also comes to life through her lens.

“I have always felt that women especially in Bengal are the warmest I have ever met and the kind of work that they do amidst thousand difficulties are worth saluting”, she remarked in this regard.

Payne added, “Also there are photos of children which depicts the innocence and fidelity”.

The exhibition will run from June 11 to 24.

Art Show in Kolkata

(Photos Avishek Mitra/IBNS)

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