Still

Still

Two Channel Video Installation

Duration: timeless

2017

Display at Utsha Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Bhubaneswar, India


 

 

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This work was done at a residency at Utsha Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Bhubaneswar, India.

Timelessness, the feeling that there is no effect of time, i.e. change, on a particular thing and it is eternal. But obviously things change, only one is unable to notice the process. I felt this strongly in two places in Bhubaneswar- while exploring the old town temples and while sitting behind the walls of Utsha. This place has a silence, a calmness about it which is soothing but at the same time it becomes disturbing when it reaches the extreme of stillness; it almost feels timeless. I’m trying to explore this feeling through a video installation; trying to know whether one can face this eternity without being restless.

The two-channel video installation is an attempt to capture the time felt at these two places. Here, the temple is made abstract and unrecognisable, as the carvings are erased during renovation. The photograph of the temple is used only as a signifier for a temple, its particularity is not important here; it is not supposed to be recognised but to be used to generate the temporality of a temple space. The second video is from inside Utsha where a twig is suspended and is swirling from a tree by a spider’s web, which denotes continuous repetitive movement, like continuous eternity. There is an artificial yellow beam of light falling on the temple’s image from the window, which is intentionally installed to simulate sun light. It immerses the viewer by creating a nostalgic atmosphere, like the rays of sun falling inside a temple. The sound is a low frequency tinnitus sound, which seems static but has minute variations, and it adds to the timeless feeling of the work.

 

There is a stillness


in this place

which resonates

with the stillness

inside me

as if I can breathe it

in and out

with every gesture,

with every pause

the silence surfaces

between us

a comforting silence

but as it intensifies

I feel devoid of shelter

naked below the sky

immersing


in the ground


with the weight of this

silence


so slow


no one can notice


no one can hold


just witness the stillness

of our dissolving insides.