Birmingham Lockdown Stories : by Jaskirt Dhaliwal Boora, COVID-19 Responses

Birmingham Lockdown Stories

Jaskirt Boora is a British Indian photographer based in Birmingham. She is interested in the
representation of gender, ethnicity and place. She has made work documenting her family life and
community during Covid 19 focusing on themes of togetherness and how communities have come
together to offer support and Care. The work includes audio and text and is shot on film.

Birmingham Lockdown Stories
by Jaskirt Boora

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Project Statement
During lockdown I was lucky enough to experience a strong sense of community and good neighbourliness. During this time I made new friends and acquaintances with people on my street I hadn’t talked to in the 6 years I’d lived here. Growing up in a corner shop I had always known my neighbours and community, and lockdown meant I finally built that same sense of belonging.

When I approached this work to create lockdown stories, I wanted to extend the feeling of good will and togetherness I had experienced, to others that might not have been so fortunate and had perhaps endured minimal contact with others. Aloma and Michael Tye were two people who came to the project through the fantastic Birmingham Settlement Charity. Through a network of family, friends, colleagues and organisations I began engaging with people across the city about their life in lockdown and recording a dialogue of how the pandemic had affected them. Each participant then chose the location that best encapsulated their lockdown experience and we worked on producing a set of collaborative portraits.

As part of this project I also collected, and in some cases facilitated, art work made by some of the participants who feature. Keren and Michael took part in a series of photography workshops, Jonnie shared drawings he blogged during lockdown and Michael King shared photos of the birth of his daughter. This content enriched the narrative and ownership.

During this project dialogues with the participants became really important and I recorded their words and conversations. The final works feature the text collected.

About the Artist
Jaskirt Dhaliwal Boora is an award winning photographer whose work focuses on portraiture and documentary photography. Fuelled by a passion for people and their stories, her work has been exhibited across the country, including Wembley stadium and Manchester’s people museum, as well as being published in The Sunday Times. She has won numerous awards including the Photo Imaging Council Award and Ideas Tap & Magnum Sports Award. Her most celebrated projects include Everyday Olympian and Mitti Di Khushboo.

Copyright 2016 GRAIN.