Nirbhaya’s Mother and Her Allies
Real-Life Sheroes: Asha Devi, Chaya Sharma, Seema Kushwaha, Yogita Bhayana
This project is a tribute to the real-life sheroes who got Nirbhaya justice. Asha Devi, mother of Nirbhaya, is a true shero, in fact, she is the real superheroine of Nirbhaya’s story. She has been greatly supported by activist lawyer, Seema Kushwara; activist social worker, Yogita Bhayana, founder of People Against Rapes in India (PARI); and IPS Officer, Chaya Sharma, who hunted down Nirbhaya's rapists.
This project comprises of silverpoint drawings of Asha Devi, her group of who fought with her to get justice for Nirbhaya. While using an ancient medium traditionally used to draw saints in the European Renaissance, I create gritty, realistic, and direct portraits of these courageous women to symbolically portray them as modern-day, feminist saints.
The grieving but stoic and brave figure of Nirbhaya's mother, Asha Devi, has come to embody the new Mother India. Women flocked to her, to support her, to tell her their own stories of sexual violence, to stand with her. She has said that while she lost her own daughter, she gained thousands of daughters in her fight for justice. She now helps other rape victims get justice through the Nirbhaya Jyoti Foundation.
About the project videos
Nirbhaya Anti-Memorial Project
What to learn more about Nirbhaya project?
One young woman faced an unspeakable crime. In its aftermath, a legion of survivors and their allies gathered to fight against the everyday violence. What began in one country became a story that spread around the globe.
Through the art of the anti-memorial, a new vision of the victim can form into a hero — one reborn from extreme trauma into a symbol of hope.