OON: Hi Sujata, Could you please tell us about your project “Pahichan”?
Pahichan was my final project at university - I had a brief idea of what I wanted to do but I wasn’t sure what I would end up with. I started to look within myself and wanted this project to be a reflection of who I am. So I came up withPahichan - meaning ‘identity’ in Nepali . It was a very personal project of mine in which I hoped to explore my own identity through championing the images and stories of Nepalese people. In my work I combine tradition with artistic styles of the contemporary, noting how our cultural history continues to bind us to our ancestors.
What was the trigger that inspired this project?
In 2015 I went to Nepal for the first time without my family. I found that being there alone was a completely different experience and from there I started thinking about what it actually means to live in the diaspora. Following this, I found some artists who took inspiration from this idea and were willing to share their personal experiences through their art.
What do you want to accomplish with this project & what’s the takeaway you want people to have when they see your pictures?
Among all your work that you have done. Which one is your favorite & what has a special kinda place for you?
Do you have a shooting strategy or creative process when you shoot?
Do you ever struggle with your identity as a British/Nepali and your experience going out in two different cultures?
What’s the best advice you have ever received, and what advice will you give to someone who is interested to do photography?
To anyone who has an interest in pursuing photography as a career, I would advise you to keep doing what you love and remember to challenge yourself. Play around with the materials you have - it doesn’t have to be perfect but always strive to improve on your last project.