'The idea is to look, search, find deep within the very concept of humanity itself.' Photos: Riddhibrata Burman
Amid the pandemic, hope can give an intangible high, but what direction should this hope have? Confined in our home in Paris, I and my wife took a surreal visual approach to Drishti, a beautiful philosophy in Yogveda, which teaches you how the energy flow in the body is directly linked to the mind. It led us to shoot a series of images.
In the world gripped by the epidemic, humanity’s advances as a race have come under shadow. Covid-19 has laid bare our vulnerabilities and proved how all our war-mongering, hunger for power, and ego, have been misplaced.
While governments around the world spent a fortune on making new missiles, they failed to provide enough beds and ventilators in hospitals. While we have sent missions to Mars, we were woefully inadequate to do enough tests.
So, amid all this darkness, a new light has been shining and it is up to us to follow this beacon. It can lead to our salvation or to our doom and the fun of it all is that it is completely up to us. The pandemic has been a catastrophe no doubt and history will judge us on how we treated our poorest and our weakest during this time.
For some, confinement has meant retiring in their chateaus in ST Tropez and sailing away on breezy spring afternoons. For others, it has meant walking in scorching heat for hundreds of kilometres to reach their homes and crying for a simple bowl of water.
The severity of this contrast sounds an alarm: How do we address it? Rampant consumerism and greed has been the new plague for a while, and where is it steering us?
So, in one way, did the pandemic actually stop us for a brief moment, let us breathe and look at the things that are truly valuable, things that really matter?
Thoughts pass by. The future seems more and more abstract. Some say we will pick up right where we left from once we have the vaccines, but is that the remedy?
The idea is to look, search, find deep within the very concept of humanity itself. What do we need the most? Hope is the biggest drug of all. It gives an intangible high, but what direction should this hope have?
My wife and I have been confined for two months in our home in Paris. We experienced so many emotions. Drishti has been a beautiful philosophy in Yogveda. While practising the asanas there’s always a direction where you look; the energy flow in the body is directly linked to the mind and drishti is one of the key fundamentals of observing your mind.
We decided to have a surreal visual approach to this philosophy, which led us to shoot a series of images.
The idea of simplicity is a necessary tool for an artist. It’s always been so. In the current scenario, it’s even more relevant. So, it was truly a magnificent experience to exercise the mind with all the thoughts that kept flying through and finding a visual interpretation with the most ordinary things.
Our inner animal is the most hidden sometimes, and to search it, needs a tremendous amount of solitude and exploration. Drishti is all about this.
The more it becomes clear, the pleasure is similar to swimming in crystal blue sea where you can see the depth and the beauty that lies beneath.
A lot of my work has been about a search. Future projects include a few books:
Une Livre d”Amour: My wife and I have been working on this together.
Femasculin: An exploration of gender and sex (sex is given to us biologically; it is natural, gender is much more complex, more psychological).
Dark Matter: The marriage of natural and urban, a dance, sort of between the two.
I hope to be able to continue my journey for as long as I can. Finding a link between philosophy and photography is magical.
This piece is a part of our special issue on Art in the time of Pandemic, curated by critic, author and one of our contributing editors, Ina Puri
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