The In-Coming Passengers: Desmond Lazaro

10 March - 16 April 2016

Desmond Lazaro was born into an Anglo Indian family in Leeds, England. His parents on the other hand migrated from Burma to Leeds in 1957 and Lazaro's great-grandfather hailed from Madras in the 1800s. When Desmond moved to India to do his MFA at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Baroda, he never really went back to England, and now lives with his family in Pondicherry, in the very state of Tamil Nadu where his ancestors originated.

Living in India meant that he had to avail of a PIO card. In order to do that, he had to prove that he had traces of being ‘Indian’, which meant that Desmond needed to trace his ancestry. Once again a long and arduous search lead him to discover baptism certificates of his great-grand parents, in a tiny cupboard of church records at the St Mary’s Catholic Church, Armenian Street, Chennai.

With this unique personal migratory history and complex journey, the new exhibition, Incoming Passengers at Chemould Prescott Road traces these stories through drawings, texts and a film, bringing in the narrative of immigrant families negotiating a home amidst imaginary homelands and the ripple effect of these movements, on generations to follow.

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