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As Acharya Mahamandaleshwar at the Ardh Kumbha Mela from the series Laxmi © Anita Khemka

Laxmi, the Third Gender in India

An ongoing documentation of the life and evolution of Laxmi Narayan Tripathi, commonly known as Laxmi, an Indian transgender rights activist.

Anita has been photographing Laxmi since 2003 and witnessed her transformation, particularly her relationship with her biological family and neighbourhood.

The transgender community in India, also referred to as the third gender or hijras are a source of fear, fascination, and curiosity. Born either male or intersex, the members of this community identify as female, dress accordingly, with some even undergoing the ritualistic castration ceremony, known as nirvana which is considered a rebirth.

This is the first time this work has been shown in the UK

“Laxmi is a mixture of profound warmth, intelligence, ambiguity, and tempestuous emotions.  I spend time with her and hence I photograph her.”

About Anita

Indian photographer, Anita Khemka (b. 1972), read English Literature at Delhi University and Visual Merchandizing at La Salle, Singapore before she decided to become a photographer in 1996. Her photographic praxis has since been a constant endeavor to find meaning in the relations with the people in her life and their identities as people, ideas or communities.

26th – 29th August (Fri and Sat, 10:00 – 19:00; Sun and Mon, 10:30 – 16:00)

Location : @ Eastgate Centre, 1st Floor, The Eastgate Shopping Centre, 22 Eastgate Street, Gloucester, GL1 1PA