In this photo essay, Sumit Sute puts together his collection of a traditional Korku wedding. Korkus are a tribe inhabiting parts of Madhya Pradesh. Taken in a small village on the banks of river Tapti, the pictures together try to portray the syntax associated with the access of public spaces. The village like any other village in the country has traditional and the modern forces competing as well as coexisting. This is the third in the ‘Travel Series’.
Did I shoot this particular album with a certain political agenda in mind? I don’t know. But out of 400 colorful pictures covering most of the modest ceremonies of a low-key Korku wedding for three continuous days, I did edit this album out with strong feelings and sense of curiosity. The way public spaces are accessed and the definite presence of syntax associated with public spaces here, after shooting this tribal wedding in Madhya Pradesh, helped me understand the curtains I have been having all the time while I accessed public spaces back in my part of the world and yet refused to overtly acknowledge the presence of similar codes with gender and generation tags. While I admit that there were these explicit differences between the urban world I represented in this small village on the banks of Tapti to that of its own, most of my modern trends also happen to be in the proximity of these traditional behavioral norms, including gender regulations and codes for generations. Yet, such norms have universally faced resistance by the marginalized in order to reclaim their spaces. Here, women did it with negotiation, children with curiosity and the elderly with their energy.