The segregation of Dreams and Reality with Arthur Crestani

Not long ago, the Indian city of Gurgaon was little more than a quiet suburb of New Delhi. But over the past several decades, steady economic boosts have bolstered the population to just shy of 2 million inhabitants. These changes have given birth to a new middle class, eager to move upwards in a society deeply entrenched in an ultra-stratified caste system. However, as French photographer Arthur Crestani’s body of work Bad City Dreams reveals, the glossy idealizations of the ‘Millenium City’ aren’t entirely accurate.

Juxtaposed against pop-up backdrops displaying the impressive infrastructure built for big businesses, migrants and blue collar workers desperate for opportunity pose solemnly among decaying urban outskirts. Side by side, shopping malls inhabit the same space as slums; livestock roam freely just outside the offices of Fortune 500 companies. Though they superficially may seem incompatible with one another, Crestani melds the opposites together to present the story of a rapidly urbanized area trying to find middle ground between two extremes.

All photos are courtesy of Arthur Crestani