This photography exhibition has evolved from a research study about the use of ecosystem services by residents of low-income settlements located at urban lakes. The study was conducted between May and November 2015 by Marthe Derkzen from VU University Amsterdam in collaboration with Harini Nagendra and Seema Mundoli from Azim Premji University in Bengaluru. The photographs tell the stories of those living at the margins of Bengaluru’s lakes: in low income settlements that include former villages, migrant clusters, and settlements that are a few decades old. While those at the margins of lakes are often blamed for the degradation of these lake ecosystems, they are also preserving and often increasing native biodiversity and open space – something quite uncommon in a modern metropolis like Bengaluru. This photo exhibition tells their untold stories, narrating their experiences of loss, hope and stories of change.
The photographs have been taken by Arati Kumar-Rao, Marthe Derkzen and Anoop Bhaskar. This initiative is supported by Azim Premji University, USAID, Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE), and VU University Amsterdam.