Inès Elsa Dalal is a Birmingham-based artist whose focus is to present alternate narratives through documentary portraiture. Inès self-initiates public exhibitions in order to provoke dialogue about culture, identity and representation. She’s travelled internationally to report on daily life in Jerusalem, Dubai and Abu Dhabi and has taught photography workshops locally and nationally. In addition to her photographic endeavours, Inès is interested in expanding her practice further including incorporating audio through oral history recordings, as well as video in future exhibition installations.
Having graduated from Manchester School of Art, with a BA (Hons) in Photography in 2011, Inès has exhibited in and curated group shows across Birmingham and Manchester. Since co-curating a 3-day festival at mac Birmingham which featured ‘Archival Activism’, an installation exploring heritage and identity, Inès has gone on to host participatory workshops, film screenings and a Pop Up Portrait Studio during a residency at The Loft, a former shop unit turned artist-led space in central Birmingham. Vivid Projects invited her to host a screening and Q&A about her directorial debut of short film ‘Dalal Archive’.
Her debut solo show, ‘West Indies to West Midlands’ launched at The Drum Intercultural Arts Centre on Remembrance Day 2014 to mark the beginning of the First World War quadrennial (2014-2018). This portrait series presented contemporary portraits of West Indian war veterans, juxtaposed with photographs from their own archives. Inès was subsequently invited to make a keynote speech about the conception and progression of her work at a symposium hosted by Voices of War and Peace at the Library of Birmingham in January 2015.
Following the reception ‘West Indies to West Midlands’ received at The Drum, Inès feels aware the importance to tour work of this nature more widely, nationally if possible. The National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire have expressed an interest and Inès is developing several project concepts continuing to commemorate veterans from Commonwealth countries before the end of 2018.
In October 2015, Inès was commissioned to film and edit ‘Love Doc’, a feature length documentary about women of varying ages and their perceptions of themselves and the concept of ‘self love’. ‘Love Doc’ will premiere at mac Birmingham this Summer as well as Rich Mix in London and Bristol later in 2016.
A selection of digitally reproduced photographic prints from an archive spanning 10 years are available to purchase and the ‘West Indies to West Midlands’ exhibition is available to tour. Inès is open to collaboration and available for commissions.