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Homai-Vyarawalla from the HV Archive Alkazi Collection of Photography

A Portrait of Homai Vyarawalla

India’s first female photojournalist

Homai Vyarawalla was a pioneer in the field of documentary photography. She began taking photographs in the 1930’s with her husband and went on to become one of the most original and prolific practitioners of day. Homai’s body of work spans more than three decades in the birth of the “young India’ and she is responsible for some of the key images through which the period is framed. From the assassination of Gandhi through to the optimism of independence, Homai’s unique interpretation goes beyond documentation to represent the spirit of the times.

In Dalda 13, Homai Vyarawalla narrates the stories behind these images and gives a fascinating account of her extraordinary life. The film further explores the relevance of the work today and why Homai Vyarawalla is a vital, yet unrecognised contributor to the international genre of documentary photography.

Directed by Monika Baker

“I was born in 1913, I met my husband when I was 13. The number thirteen has always been significant in my life.”

About Homai

Homai Vyarawalla (1913-2012) was a pioneer in more than one sense of the word. Not only was she India’s first female photojournalist but her career documented the overthrow of British colonial rule.

Born in 1913 in Navsari, Gujarat, to a Parsi family, Homai spent her earliest years in and around Bombay. She studied photography at the Sir Jamsetjee Jeejebhoy School of Art, where she took striking images of her classmates.

Daily from 26th August to 29th August

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