Madhuban Mitra e Manas Bhattacharya
Madhuban Mitra (1972) and Manas Bhattacharya (1977) are based in Kolkata, India, and work together across a range of media including photography, video, animation and text. Madhuban studied English Literature and holds a Ph.D. in Cultural Studies and Manas studied cinematography after completing his M.A. in Comparative Literature. Their work has been shown in the Thessaloniki Photobiennale, Greece; Singapore International Photography Festival; Lalit Kala Akademi New Delhi and Chennai and Mumbai Art Room, India among others. The duo received the Skoda Breakthrough Artist Award for the best debut solo show in India in 2011. Regarding their work for the competition they state: «The ubiquity of photocopy (Xerox) shops is a unique phenomenon in India. Housed in dingy, cramped rooms tucked away in alleys, backstreets and squalid basements, life in these shops revolves in a loop around the whir of the Xerox machine. Constituting a micro-economy within the informal sector, the photocopy centres provide a livelihood to thousands of people. Operating outside legal parameters, dozens of books in their entirety are photocopied in the span of a day in a single shop, making them an indispensable, though invisible part of the knowledge industry».