Photography is a postindustrial art form with a strong humanistic paradigm of practice where the artist fixes a moment at a particular instant & immortalize memory. But one that is immortalized loses life at that very moment, as life is the most precious possession of the mortals. An Alive Art Project (Initiated through BK Hygroscope, a project supported by KHOJ in 2014 under the program Negotiating Roots) aims to unfix them and bring back life into them. The artist's method is weathering the photographs. By unfixing a photograph the aim is to dissolve the artist’s ego of his being into becoming, and weathering becomes a performative process. As the effect of weathering makes it transform every moment till a point when the image of the photograph ceases to exist, leaving behind absence of the image filled with the memories of the weatherings. And the intermediates of the journey of the weathered photographs are preserved as digital footprints.
Death or the Fire of Memory: Original photograph was taken in 2001 showing Jhapan festival in Bishnupur, West Begnal. It is a festival mainly of Rajbanshi tribe taking place since 17th century dedicated to goddess Manasa, where snake charmers come from all around and perform. I was visiting the festival with a friend and his small documentary crew. On a 4"X6" print of the photograph wet weathering process was performed, keeping it under a water sprinkler in an orchard in Bungalow Ki Kandi Village, Uttarakhand. An one of the day I discovered a millipede on the photograph, dead. and a strange flamelike color tone starting to appear on the photograph around it. I let it be there for a few days more. Ironically, Just a few days back, in August 2015 snake charmers and their shows have been banned and performers arrested for charges of cruelty against animal. This footprint have limited edition of 12 digital photographic prints.