Akshay Mahajan (b. 1985, India) is an artist deeply invested in utilizing photography as a mirror to culture and collective memory. His practice thoughtfully examines the tapestry of post-colonial cities, landscapes, folklore, and mythologies, meticulously scrutinized to reveal myriad "failed futures." His work observes how our postcolonial reality is often anchored in a pre-colonial memory, using the camera as a tool to lay bare these connections. With a discerning eye, Mahajan explores how the physical structures and spaces in the non-western world can become emblematic of unfulfilled aspirations and unrealized potentials due to unresolved historiography. Simultaneously, Mahajan contemplates the intricate ways in which individual lives intersect with, and are shaped by, these landscapes. Eager to delve deeper into these complex narratives, Mahajan leverages open-source systems, shareware logic, and flows of capital to investigate economies and empires in
“faraway former imperial outposts”.
In 2023, Akshay was the runner-up of the Aperture Portfolio Prize and was named Foam Talent for 2023-24.
Born in India, Akshay's work has been showcased at venues like the 13th Bamako Encounters and Encontros da Imagem. Beyond photography, he engages with the visual arts through writing, teaching, and curation.
In 2008, Akshay co-founded Blindboys.org, a collective dedicated to reclaiming public spaces for photography, both online and offline. He is a member of the photo editorial team of PIX Quarterly, which focuses on South Asian photographic practices. He co-curates both GoaPhoto, an international photography festival, and Goa Familia, an evolving archive exploring family histories from Goa, India's smallest state.