Munem Wasif has photographed a blurred boundary between Bangladesh and India with a dispassionate and systematic approach that mimics investigation, topographic study, geological survey or a simple aesthetic search. Unlike his other works with personal intimacy and humanistic vision, this one stems from a meticulous method of observing a land over a long period of time. It seems similar to recording something, but not in a planned way with any specific purpose and rather by losing control of what happens within a carefully planned frame.
The chosen land is a witness of hundreds of years of territorial conflicts, colonization, the divide of the subcontinent and mass-migration in 1947, the liberation war of Bangladesh in 1971 and the current border tension with the neighbouring country, India. Even if this land suffers from the absence of any real identity, this never diminishes its presence, and its body carries the wound of aggressive industrial acts, such as stone collection and crushing. Wasif’s work is not a definitive act of understanding the totality of deeds, rather of being deliberately ignorant of them with the help of an unconscious camera, to merely show the land’s lone existence over a period of time.
Extracts and summary of Tanzim Wahab