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98 dagar · 98 दिन

98 Days


A photo-essay exhibition about the social, psychological, emotional and spiritual impact of living in the world's toughest Covid-19 lockdown.

"Whatever it is, coronavirus has made the mighty kneel and brought the world to a halt like nothing else could. Our minds are still racing back and forth, longing for a return to 'normality', trying to stitch our future to our past and refusing to acknowledge the rupture. But the rupture exists. And in the midst of this terrible despair, it offers us a chance to rethink the doomsday machine we have built for ourselves. Nothing could be worse than a return to normality."

Arundhati Roy

Human Rights Activist

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Through daily life images and reflections, the photo-essay chronicles the first 98 days of India's coronavirus lockdown.


The objective is to explore a new Indian reality of unspoken emotions, as Indians, and the rest of humanity, face an apprehensive future.


2020 brought the world an unprecedented paradigm shift of social distancing, suspicion and deep inner turmoil.


Unknown to common Indians, social distancing, a phenomenon completely alien and a privilege only for India's elite, struck everyday life without warning, opening up a plethora of unpredicable challenges.

 

As India was abruptly forced to a complete halt, the days, weeks and months that followed, revealed a bitter truth for the average person. It all became a choice between plague and cholera, of being claimed by either the virus or hunger.

 

In a country with 18% of the world's population, where the vast majority live on less than the equivalent of 2 US dollars a day, life turned into an unimaginable humanitarian disaster overnight, especially for the daily wagers, migrant workers and small time traders.


The gentle calm and vibrancy were replaced by fear and anxiety, and ultimately a deep sense of anonymity. A nothingness, with the uncertainty of what once was, what currently is and what eventually will be, took hold of India.


Photography and essays by

Mattias Löw & Reshma Mansuri Löw

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"We can choose to walk through it, dragging the carcasses of our prejudice and hatred, our avarice, our data banks and dead ideas, our dead rivers and smoky skies behind us. Or we can walk through lightly, with little luggage, ready to imagine another world. And ready to fight for it."

Arundhati Roy

Human Rights Activist

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