17th April 2009. Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan, Bangalore


Mallikarjun Katakol’s photography exhibit, The Aesthetics of Display, explores the artistry with which vegetables, dry goods, fish, meat, utensils, clothes and other products are traditionally displayed by street vendors and shopkeepers. Quiet, unassuming and without the self-conscious artifice that sometimes surrounds the showcasing of merchandise in malls and branded stores, these practices are rarely regarded as expressing an aesthetic or as exemplifying a creative sensibility. Katakol’s photographs challenge this perspective. He brings our attention to the place of design in everyday practices. The series invites us to question the terms art, aesthetics and display and asks us to reconsider how we look at the world around us.


Mallikarjun B. Katakol is a Bangalore-based photographer who has worked as a freelancer with advertising agencies and print media for the past fifteen years. He was born in Dharwad, Karnataka, and studied at CAVA Art School in Mysore. After college he worked as a graphic designer in Bangalore for a couple of years. Following a stint as an assistant photographer in Mumbai, he set up his own company in 1993. In addition to commercial photography, he has pursued the craft of image-making in projects that explore the aesthetics of tradition in contemporary India.