Picture Book
Aveek Sen

“One of the finest tuned writers on the decolonial imagination, and on what it means to be a sexual subject in the modern world, Aveek Sen now leaves us with a tribute to the fragility of life, and the creative spirit we can bring to it, if we allow ourselves to register anew the mystery and compulsion of all that we see, of those we love, and of all those who come within the range of our sight, and to do so without veering away from fear and dread. This book is exquisite, `stitched together,’ to use his own words, `with a care that is the opposite of killing.’ I could  not be more grateful for the way it brings Aveek Sen into the heart where, for so many, he already belongs and always will.”

— Jacqueline Rose, author of The Plague – Living Death in Our Times


“In Aveek Sen’s Pocket Book, cloth as intimate lining silently incites flesh and soul alike. The fabrics in his Picture Book range across beds, hang from bodies, swell with air: light, simple, and deep. Softly, amidst this nestling, swathing, and billowing, real things turn into fictions, life into art, and back again. If you never knew the deliciousness of conversations with the incomparable Aveek Sen—but also, even more so, if you did—don’t despair. Here he is. On the other side of his exit without a clause.”

— Kajri Jain, author of Gods in the Time of Democracy


Why does he say that he writes or teaches without being able to call himself a writer or teacher? Why this need for an exit clause? Exit from what? He finds himself repeatedly taking pictures of doors and windows, of paths leading away somewhere, vistas pulling the eye toward a vanishing point. And even though he is an obsessive taker of pictures, he refuses to buy a proper camera, preferring to use his phone instead—although he loves, with a secret voluptuousness, that khopp-chharraak sound of the analog shutter. He fantasizes holding a camera against his belly—shooting from the belly, as a friend puts it – and straining his neck and shoulders to look down at the inverted image in the viewfinder grid. It is a little grainy with dust and a bit of fungus, like the allure of an early-morning dream, neither fully out there in the world nor quite behind the eye, but somewhere in-between, held in a kind of limbo before it begins its journey toward being realized as a photograph.

Designed by Ruud Ruttens, Ghent
Printed by AC Dominie, Singapore
Afterword by Chandrima Bhattacharya, Calcutta
April 2023

52pp., 100 × 190 mm, softcover
40 colour images
Edition of 500
ISBN 978-0-6453840-5-5
$16.50 AUD

₹500 for orders within India