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Arpita Shah - The Open College of the Arts

Arpita Shah

I am a photographic artist and educator based in Scotland. I work between photography and film, exploring the intersections of culture, heritage and identity. As an India-born artist, I have lived across various continents before settling in the UK and this migratory experience is reflected in my practice.

My research centres on the politics of identity, race, gender and representation. Working with portraiture photography, my practice is socially engaged and I often collaborate with women from diverse cultural backgrounds exploring the intergenerational experiences of diaspora, migration, displacement and colonialism.

I completed my BA (Hons) in Photography from Napier University in Edinburgh in 2006. My work has been exhibited internationally, including at the Detroit Center of Contemporary Photography (2013); the Brighton Photo Biennial (2014); Street Level Photoworks in Glasgow (2014); Focus Festival in Mumbai, India (2015); Chobi Mela IX in Dhaka, Bangladesh (2017); and Autograph APB, London (2018).

I have received commissions from Creative Scotland, An Lanntair and Ankur Arts and have completed artist residencies at Street Level Photoworks (Scotland), Tramway (Scotland), Kuona Trust (Kenya) and have an upcoming AIR at Light Work (USA) in 2019.


I am also co-founder of Focàs Scotland, an initiative that supports, exhibits and commissions local and international emerging photographers.




arpita shah