Artist Dawinder Bansal is celebrating 'Asian Women and Cars' in the first ever photo archive of South Asian women and their cars

Asian Women & Cars: The Road to Independence is a brand new art installation and film about the first generation of South Asian women who learned to drive in the UK. 

Through a series of interviews, British Asian artist, Dawinder Bansal, celebrates the hidden stories of Sandwell and Black Country, first generation, South Asian migrant women and their cars in a new art exhibition opening on 25 May – 29 June, 2019.  

Using film and photographs Dawinder explores the relationships between the women, driving and their cars. 

The installation will highlight the positive impact of these women on future generations of British Asian women who now benefit from the sacrifices made by the first generation who battled against patriarchy and traditional family structures to gain independence. 

Dawinder Bansal said:  This is the first time a project like this has ever taken place in the UK.

"This project is an opportunity to celebrate and document stories of women who are often invisible pioneers in the South Asian community and in history. 

"In this film, we’re also paying homage to vintage motor vehicles by featuring the classic Citroen 2CV. Citroen celebrates its centenary birthday and the 2CV turns seventy. 

Asian Image:

Picture: Joginder K. Bansal and Jaspal S. Bansal

To creative a real representation of Asian women across the country, past and present, Dawinder is launching the first ever photo archive of Asian Women photographed with their cars in May 2019. 

Dawinder said: When I looked through my large collection of family photographs, I noticed lots of images of my father and brothers with cars but only one of my mother. I want to see more images of women and I know they exist out there.

"They are just hidden away. I was privileged to see private photo collections of the women I interviewed. 

"The photos I saw were incredible. Beautiful in fact.  I want to celebrate and capture South Asian women’s history in a new archive of unseen vintage and modern photography. I’m also asking all Asian women to take photos of themselves now. 

"By dressing up in their best clothes and taking a photo to submit online. I firmly believe that today’s photographs are tomorrows historical archives and records. In 100 years, I know this archive will be of great value to future generations. 

“The inspiration for this work came after speaking with my aunt about what driving enabled her to do and have. She worked three jobs while raising a young family, all the while keeping her struggles secret from the outside world.

"Alongside this, a very personal conversation with my mother revealed her unfulfilled dreams of wanting to drive and why she pushed me to get my licence. 

This film, exhibition and photo archive is a tribute to the women who paved the way for women like me. The women who paved the road to independence.   

People can submit their photos and car stories to 

Exhibition Details

When: 25 May to 29 June, 2019
Opening times: Wed to Sat: 11am – 4pm
Where: The British Muslim School, Lodge Road, West Bromwich, B70 8NX

Exhibition launch and guided tour 
When: 25 May 2019, 11am –1pm
Where: The British Muslim School, Lodge Road, West Bromwich, B70 8NX

Event details 
When: 26 June 2019, 6pm – 8pm 
Where: Town Hall, West Bromwich, B70 8DY
Join Dawinder Bansal in conversation with a dynamic guest panel of South Asian women who are passionate about cars, driving and influencing social change for South Asian girls/women in the UK and India. 

To find out more you can also click here