Offset Pitara: Collective Reading Sessions


Date: November 28 – 29, 2022
Time: 4 pm – 6 pm
Venue: Ishara Art Foundation, Mezzanine
Registration: Click here

Ishara Art Foundation in collaboration with Gulf Photo Plus is pleased to present The Offset Pitara: Collective Reading Sessions workshop, a two day workshop conducted by photographer, curator and publisher Anshika Varma.

The Offset Pitara is a travelling library of photobooks intended to invite readers to observe, question, and participate in the journey undertaken by its presented authors. The Pitara (trunk) has been created with the intention to bring forward active interventions in looking at the photobook as an artistic form in its own right offering itself as a resource space for photographers, students, researchers, and anyone interested in visual media.

For the workshop at the Ishara Art Foundation, Varma has curated a special collection of 6 books that engage with themes of family, loss and narratives that traverse the worlds of personal and political. The Collective Reading Program at Offset is rooted in the desire for knowledge building and community engagement through lens and book-based media. They encourage the questioning of visual representation, and finding alternative ways of seeing to understand theories in book-building. The Postcard Series will also be present at the workshop for those who might want to engage with responding to the book through their own writing. The Postcard Series at Offset comes from childhood memories where conversations revolved around what we read and how a book would leave us feeling.

“I have often had similar experiences while reading through photo books the stories and worlds it can transport one to can be traumatic and even magical. Often, the same book can impact different people in different ways. If you have read a book from our collection at the Offset Pitara and it reminded you of something: it could be a memory, a person, an object or even a place; pick up a post card and address a letter to them.You can drop it off inside the Pitara (trunk) after placing a stamp on it and drop it off in our collective memory box.” – Anshika Varma

For more information on Offset Projects, visit
The workshop will be conducted in English. Please register as seats are limited.

Anshika Varma
Anshika Varma (b. 1985) is a photographer, editor, curator and publisher with an interest in personal, collective and mythical histories. She is the founder of Offset Projects, an artist-led initiative in New Delhi, India, that works to create channels of engagement in photography and book-making through workshops, residencies, artist talks, pop-up reading rooms and collaborative exercises in publishing. Combining her curiosity to study cultural and social evolution with storytelling, her work often looks at the emotional connection between the individual and their environment. Anshika’s works and curations have been part of exhibitions, festivals and panel conversations at Fotomuseum Winterthur, Photo Kathmandu, Chennai Photo Biennale. She has been invited to speak within educational institutions and festival programming on subjects of photography, publishing and the growth of the visual language in South Asia and continues to teach on these subjects at institutions such as Yale (Connecticut), NUS (Singapore), Photography Studies College (Melbourne) and Ashoka University (Sonipat). Her writing has been part of publications such as Aperture Magazine, Photobooks& and the Alkazi Foundation. Her practice is defined through processes of collective participation and creation of work seperate from institutional systems.

About Gulf Photo Plus
Gulf Photo Plus is Dubai’s center for photography, equipping and inspiring the local and international photography community through photography workshops, free artist talks, state-of-the-art printing services, and the region’s longest-running international photography event, GPP Photo Week.
For more information, visit