Ketaki Sheth (b. 1957)
A photographer known for her black-and-white documentary photographs, Ketaki Sheth’s work depicts life and labour in urban spaces.
Sheth was born and raised in Mumbai and received her undergraduate degree in English literature from Elphinstone College (1979), followed by a Master’s in Communication Arts from Cornell University, New York (1980). She began photographing in the 1980s under the mentorship of Raghubir Singh.
In 1995, she moved to London, where she shot Twinspotting (1995–98), a series of staged photographs of twins from the diasporic Patel community in the UK and India. Her street photographs of Mumbai, taken between 1988–2004, were exhibited in Bombay Mix: Street Photographs, at Bodhi Art, Mumbai and Sepia International, New York (2008).
In 2005, Sheth began photographing the Sidi community of Gujarat, recording their daily rituals and community life, which were compiled in A Certain Grace: The Sidis, Indians of African Descent (2007). She made her switch to colour photography in Photo Studio (2015–18), an exhibition-cum-photobook that included images from sixty-nine photo studios situated across eight states in India.
Sheth’s work has been widely exhibited in India and abroad, including at Art Heritage Gallery, New Delhi; the National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai; Tate Modern, London; and the Peabody Essex Museum, Massachusetts. She was awarded the Sanskriti Award for Indian Photography in 1992.
At the time of writing, Sheth lives and works in Mumbai.
Alkazi Foundation for the Arts. “Bombay Mix: Street Photographs.” Accessed July 13, 2021. https://alkazifoundation.org/bombay-mix-street-photographs/.
D’Mello, Rosalyn. “Ketaki Sheth: Her Own Space.” Open Magazine, October 10, 2018. https://openthemagazine.com/features/photography/ketaki-sheth-her-own-space/.
Khurana, Charanpreet. “The Vintage Beauty of India’s Photo Studios Gets Memorialised in a New Exhibition.” Scroll, September 30, 2018. https://scroll.in/magazine/895260/the-vintage-beauty-of-indias-photo-studios-gets-memorialised-in-a-new-exhibition.
Ramnath, Nandini. “Photo Essay | Sidi Lights.” Livemint, March 8, 2013. https://www.livemint.com/Leisure/XKSxJek8yDOfBWtw4aydSO/Photo-Essay–Sidi-lights.html.
Saffronart. “Ketaki Sheth.” Accessed July 13, 2021. https://www.saffronart.com/artists/ketaki-sheth.