Dad’s the way

Sakal Times
Friday, 15 February 2019

A photography exhibition on fathers bonding with their kids promotes the idea of shared parenthood

Swedish Dads - Indian Dads, a popular photo exhibition which made its India debut at Swedish Avenue, Pimpri Chinchwad, is underway till February 24. The 35 select photographs on display showcase fathers, from both the countries, supporting joint responsibilities, shared parenthood and gender equality.

The world today has become more sensitive towards a father’s role in raising children. Earlier maternity leaves were only granted so that mothers could stay at home with the child. These days, fathers too are asking for paternity leaves. To support gender equality, the Consulate General of Sweden announced the photo exhibition. The images of Swedish dads were clicked by Swedish photographer Johan Bävman whereas Indian dads were photographed by Avinash Gowariker.

The exhibition is derived from the lack of role models, that men can relate to as parents. The Swedish fathers, who were featured, had remained at home for at least six months on paternity leave with their children, which is longer than most fathers in the world get. What it meant to them, how it affected their relationships with both their partners and their children, and what were their expectations, all this has been captured. “By showing the everyday lives of fathers on parental leave, through pictures and interviews, I’ve focused on men who’ve chosen to put bonding with their children and families before their jobs and careers,” says Bävman, adding “With this project, I hope to inspire more men to begin reflecting on their roles as fathers and partners, which is an important step towards a more gender-balanced society.”

Gowariker, who enjoys creating the drama inherent in shooting portraiture, savours his relationships with people trying to understand what makes them tick, what makes them comfortable and reflects their true nature.

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