Arko Datto (India, 1986) questions what it means to be a photographer in the digital age while simultaneously playing the role of observer and commentator on critical issues.

He pursue narratives on seemingly disparate topics- forced migration, techno- fascism, surveillance in the digital panopticon, disappearing islands, nocturnal realms and psychosomatic stress of captive animals to name a few.

He has recently won the Arles Prix Voies Off 2017 and the Gomma Grant 2016. He has been internationally published (TIME, National Geographic, Newsweek, Liberation, Al Jazeera, Financial Times) and exhibited (Arles, Ffotogallery, Museum fur Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt, Chobi Mela. Angkor Photo Festival).

Selected Stories



Picnicking is far from a simple affair in eastern India.

In a land where the fleeting months of December to February offer the only time to ‘enjoy’ the otherwise unbearable tropical sun, picnicking is a winter pastime that’s taken very, very seriously. 

Buses and cooks are hired as groups of families, friends, neighbors and colleagues travel far to claim the perfect picnic spot.

This work, done between 2013 and 2015 takes a look at this phenomenon.

Rail diwali

Diwali, the festival of lights, is an ancient Hindu festival celebrated during autumn every year.The festival spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness or good over evil, knowledge over ignorance and hope over despair.The images here take a look at how Diwali is celebrated by some of the most impoverished sections of society.


Covering a span of four years, Snakefire presents a portrait of the Malay/ Indonesian night and is the second installment of an existential trilogy on night time, night life and night space – three essential elements that exist both in grudging harmony and brutal confrontation.

Selected Portraits


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