Space has a great power to influence our thought, nourish our philosophy, which we felt again during this short duration of Seven days. Again we experienced and understood nature newly, chanted it’s eternal beauty and tried to connect our spirit through some creative activities. This time the piece of land was ‘Charkhole’ , a tiny hamlet, Twenty-Seven kilometer away from Kalimgpong town.
From the altitude of 5500 feet, we were experiencing the wonderful hillscape, where mighty hills were asserting the superiority. We were mesmerized by the offerings of nature. May be every one of us were appreciating it’s different entities and values , were recalling different experience and philosophies, observing different characteristics and were engaging with the space differently but somewhere, all of those individual engagements were concluding a collective thought, were pointing towards same metaphysical concepts and discourses, which has been reflected in our artworks also.
Almost all of we were interested in the different providing of the space, where, undoubtedly nature influenced us the most. With the direct usage of motif and material from nature, many of us were tried to incorporate visuals from religious & cultural practices, geographical characteristics and it’s changing aspects. Although in terms of execution these works are having a variety but serving for the same salutation of nature, which could be connect by the key thread called ‘nature’. – SIDDHARTHA SHIL
We altogether went to a pine Forest during residency, I got chance to observe the environment over there as I realised that the whole place of the hill is somewhat different from the environment we live in Assam . During this expedition. we saw the change in season, as the dusty wind breezes and the trees shed thin old leaves, new buds starts to bloom.
I found fallen leaves all over the forest and an urge of touching to feel those leaves emarges. So , suddenly I started collecting those and stacked on a line in between the trees, as if the roots have been connected with each other . Then an interesting thing happened , other participants also have started collecting fallen leaves and bringing to me. This engagement tells about the interest they find in this work. End of the day a form has been made throughout that forest, so we went to our residents.
Next day when I go there again to see the situation , I saw that everything has been scattered all over the Forest because of the rain. So , I re- engaged with those leaves and gathered them to make same as before. After two days passes , I go there and saw that a new form has been bade . Probably by some one else from the village.
So overall the engagement of human with other natural elements was the most interesting thing that we have seen at that place. Because people living in there are so close to nature trying to live in a harmony.
In the first project “The Calls of Nature”, I used some industrial goods like telephone, pen, paper etc to establish the fact that some energy continues to call or knock us, to make us understand the naturel activities. But our sense organs are not enough to understand that. Sometimes we receive the call but ignore it or sometimes we get the point.
And the second project, “The Curving Road”, where I used few bamboo sticks and stones. Roads are mainly made for the better communication but in the hilly regions, roads are in a very bad condition, it has bolts and pebbles all over, it’s steep and slanting and it has curvy edges. When I started my journey from the plain land to the hills, the roads became slanting gradually as I was getting more closer to the hills. Some slopes are going down and some are moving upMand it actually feels like the good and the bad days of our lives. My second project is a Metaphor
where the road is actually depicting the ups and downs of human life
DEBAJIT RUDRA PAUL
Title- Whisper of the wind
Discipline – Installation
Medium – Poly curtains and found objects
Place- Charkhole, 2023
Air, amalgamation of different components if we see scientifically. Contains all kind of gases which helps to keep this planet alive. We can find that air has been worshipped mythologically for a long time in different cultures and regions. In India we learned about “Vayu”(God of the air) from our childhood. Worshipped air as devine massanger of the gods. In Vedic scriptures Vayu is an important deity and closely associated with Indra(the king of god’s). Upanishads praise Air as ‘Prana’ or life breath of the world. When I first went to the highest peak of Charkhole I realised that we forget praising our daily basic necessities that keeps us alive. When the refreshing wind blows directly on face , all my senses got activated and I felt a whisper from the wind . As if it reminds me the value that we somehow forgot to worship in this growing civilization.
As people who lives there are mostly Nepali, we can find their prayer flags all over the hills. They call it “Lung ta” , believe that will carry the blessings depicted on the flags to all beings. As wind passes over the surface of the flags , the air gets purified and scaentified by the mantras. Somehow I felt that spiritual connection over there and engage in some activities to cherish the moment. So , to amplify the whisper of the wind I have installed several differently sized poly ultra-thin curtains at some places of the hill. Which were obviously influenced by the prayer flags but more longer than actual flags. Some were three meters long and three feet wide in size. Through this installation, a conversation of nature and observer has been established that lured me towards a meditative experience.
“Creation and destruction is the constant of Universe”
I have spent some time at Charkhole village. Met people, saw their lifestyle, engaging by doing farming vegetables and flowers. To make more habitable place in the hills, they used to lit the hills by fire in way to cultivation and housing. When I first went there I’ve found a smell of burned leaves, grass, branches, trees and stones . Minutely observed and analyse every small entity that have been destroyed to fulfill the needs of human civilisation. The textures on the burned fallen branches and trees make urge to touch and feel the sensitivity of the situation. Later to get engaged with the sentiment, I have started erecting those branches to create a form . Spending more time with that place I have created some significant house like structures using burned branches and jute-ropes.
CHAYAN DAS THAKUR
I am a tiny being in this Universe with five working senses. Dwelling in a place means enjoying or living with all the features of that place. The air, the soil, the houses, the people, their habits, their way of life, each made me experience that place. I hear every step, felt the touch of every leaf as if they were talking to me. I got lost in those vast mountains, don’t have the power to hold them. Just watching and playing with them in private and they give me a reason to live.
I know that I don’t have the power to hold those vast mountains, can never have the experience of living like them. As they have been standing for billions of years. They soothe me but I can’t give them anything. Just trying to trace them and neutralize my emotions and excitement.
Area: 30 ft. x 4 ft.
Materials: Cloth, Metal bells, Bamboo, Threads.
Space: Charkhole, Kalimpung, West Bengal.
When I try to imagine hills, it not always the uneven landscapes or the sky touching formswhich renders in mind but sometime these visuals are the impression of culture and lifestyle only and having an indirect connection with hills. Sometime these images exemplifies the parallel way of living, expresses some unique set of belief, philosophy of the culture and which ultimately juggles me in the notion of time.
May be this juggling happens into me because my experience of the materialistic world contradicts with the experience and visuals of these places. As in the places like this, I am perceiving nature in one of its purest forms, and these experiences triggers me to think about the metaphysical world and it’s philosophy with some extent of spirituality. My work also has been done upon one of the related thought.
As I believe there are multiple entities are belonging all together in the same nature. We human beings also have that same quality within ourselves. We try to balance those entities to maintain our relations and to fulfill our needs. In basis of that balancing we create our image for the outer world. These multiple entities are the part of same human being.
[This work is having a kinetic mechanism which functions by the motion of the swing. Here the swing is open for the participants. By swinging on it one can enjoy tintinnabulation of the installed bells.]
In this residency, I wanted to create amalgamation of what I see and what I feel through painting. Basically I am an abstract painter. Lines ,textures and colours has been driven by my mental state , depending on the situation of immediate surrounding. The process of painting gradually goes twards changing forms , colour etc untill it reaches to the ultimate mental satisfaction.
Every situation and engagement with hills of Charkhole brings me back to painting. The abstraction and aesthetic value of that hill gives me a peaceful feeling which I envy throughout my life .
After spending some precious time with nature I wanted to engage more. So, I’ve started painting on paper sitting at the hilltop using charcoal and red colour on paper . Those paintings later has been displayed throughout the wood/hills to show the inspiration and creation altogether.
To me, Every painting i did there is like an evidence of the silent conversation between me and that hill.
“The days I spent in the mountains.
The journey to the mountains in ‘Charkhole’ Kalimpong, for our residency program mesmerized my inner self with aesthetic experiences. The time I spent with this beautiful nature, landscape and the different forms of the mountains in different times and surroundings fascinated everyone, as if I Lost myself there. Here I have been able to relate/analogise the diversified weathers of mountains with versatility of human nature/character embedded within us.