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  Self-portrait, 1997, Swiss Cottage
New Acquisitions

Self-portrait, 1997, Swiss Cottage

After studying at Parsons and the International Center for Photography in New York, Pamela Singh began her career as a photojournalist. Working primarily in India and Africa, Singh became emotionally and physically drained by the pace of reportage and by the late 1990s had shifted her approach to photography. Focusing on projects that evolve over several years, Singh since has been creating a meditative series of images of herself in public, such as the temple complex at Angkor Wat, or in intimate and private spaces.

In Self-portrait, 1997, Swiss Cottage, Singh’s sleeping black-and-white figure and personal effects assert clearly the underlying photograph. Working with painters in Jaipur, she mastered the process of mixing colors and hand-tinting black-and-white prints. The enigmatic shadows and soft hues heighten the sense of intimacy and dreamlike quality of the composition.


Self-portrait, 1997, Swiss Cottage
Pamela Singh (b. 1962, New Delhi, India)
1997 (printed 2008)
Gelatin silver print, hand-painted with acrylic and gouache
Purchase—Friends of the Freer and Sackler Galleries   S2013.5