The Desert and Mirrorwork Skirts

Book no 5. 2008.
"To Surrender"
Rajasthan
Back from teh desert :)
LOTS of stories to tell. the universe conspires. orange half moons. Sand and Silence. Stillness. Winds. Perfumed oils. 21st century mystics. Moondrunk encounters by the edge of a sacred lake. Lost at a local full moon festival. Shared Cigarettes with a beggar at the edge of the train door. A tiny little village on the indo-pak border where sufi musicians sing by night. bagpipes and strange contortions that create music only imagined in dreams. Embroidery Villages and Fab-India Conspiracies.
De-mystifying the mystic. Breaking down the exotic.
Got so used to looking at things as 'symbolic' that real life becomes a representation rather than realism.
So so many questions. and answers that are lost in translation.
I've been assaulted by sounds. Like occupying armies. Been surrounded. astounded. confounded.
I'm understanding what it means to really Listen.
To Love. and to Surrender.

these are just the drawings on the way there whilst on train. :)

things following the train:
and there's so much love to give.
I also held a rat in me hand in the rat temple. aaaaaaaarkh

The person you love is 72.8% water



This space was silent for a while. 
I've been meditating upon stillness. 

'Close the language 
door (the mouth)
Open the love window 
(the eyes)
The moon (the reflected light of the divine)
won't use the door. 
Only the window.'

a single brushstroke can erase the storm Numbered List
(I'm back :))
pornographic skelingtons and all

Let us Compare Mythologies



New book- the fourth this year. 

Kattacodita - 'as if impelled by destiny'
Third time I've found myself in hampi in a span of 6 months.
I'm called to those ruins
like tide to moon. like moon to silver. 
Everything I touch turns to stone. Watching the Sun set over the river.
The River too is carved by the moon.
Some nights stay up till dawn.
watching star follow star follow star
before falling down.
Gaia and me construct kingdoms. we connect the dots.
She doesn't believe that stars are made of fire.
there's more to this than combustion.
 
no one looks for stars when the sun comes out.
warm. spread out on stone.
ink brush- dipped in the river.
Rain is born of our fingertips.
Rivers too.

500 times we whisper to the gods.
With each step, repeating his name.
Until we're in the clouds.
 Where Hanuman was born.
Chai and Chilli Pakoda. Langoors. 

and Love gifted to strangers in the form of Ink on Paper. 
(what else do I know enough to give?)

And the Head priest asks for a portrait of Hanuman.
Who lifted mountains and set islands
on fire.
On seeing it he asks for 2000 prints for every hanuman temple in Hampi.


'An author doesn't necessarily understand the meaning of his own story more than anyone else'
Lewis Carol 

Bumble Fruit

Zosix and Camelon.
teh beginning of an epic of sorts.
Attempted to be illustrated by bonifisheii.


Tales from Topographic Oceans


Gokarna 2009
From the River to the Sea.

'Maggie and Milly and Molly and May
went down to the beach (to play one day)

and maggie discovered a shell that sang 
so sweetly she couldn't remember her troubles, and

milly befriended a stranded star
whose rays five languid fingers were:


And molly was chased by a horrible thing
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles: and


May came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world
and as large as alone.


For whatever we lose (like a you or a me)
Its always ourselves we find in the sea.
(sometimes one also finds the skelingtons of strange creatures called by the locals as "GODFISH" (which was later discovered to be a whale!))

and sometimes one falls in love with a little scruffy black puppy called "Kalikalooti" :O)

Snakes and Lotuses


A littul book I worked on as a final project for an Indian Literature course. :)
Through the texts I encountered I saw that snakes often symbolized men
and lotuses often symbolized women.
This is a poetic-imagery based interpretation of the relationships between the varied men and women through selected Indian texts.

Let us begin with a benediction
a prediction
a beautifully contorted contradiction
To shape without form.
To silence devoid of disdain.
To devotion despite disillusion.
To Divinity that exists
(if not in his fingertips)
then in everything that shimmers.

Shakuntala

Rani from Nagamandala


Vasantsena from "mrittakatika"



.
I handmade the paper, the illustrations,poetry,collages and also bound it meself.
:)


We are all made of stars

me paintstakingly-hand-drawn animated ads are all over Tv!
Please to be watching.
There are 15 little ads being shown over the month.
done for NDTV and The Week Magazine
with Kashyap Murali
Soundtrack by Kishan Balaji.
Watch watch watch! They're on every 20 minutes or so.
Or watch this space as I upload them slowly but surely.

video video

Sugar crystals


Oh look its a calender.
Only it doesn't really function. (yet)
Time has told me not to ask for more.
doo bee dooo de doop doop de doooo.
May you be showered with a dozen balloons.

Fireworks

Today there were fireworks in my city.
Not in the sky. But 8 explosions.
Yes, It didn't hurt. It could have been worse.
But it represents a drive that worries me.

I understand destruction.
With each drop of ink the space that was my canvas is broken.
with every syllable silence is dead.
But out of this death is born creation. the cycle continues.
(and on and on and on)and there's so much love to give. there's so much love to give.
Here we are. Poets.painters.philosophers.politicians. desperately trying to grasp what we're born into. All the immensity. trying to imitate. trying to emulate.
'but art can never imitate. It can only inspire.'
We cannot play god. through bombs. through paint.
The approach should then not be to imitate. To have 'creation' at your fingertips.
but to thank.

I could spend years painting a mountain. It will never be the mountain itself.
trapped on paper. not so vivid.
in technicolour.
(It will never be the mountain.)
It only expresses love for that mountain.
It is not to make it mine. But to make it me.
Love is:
Anterior to life.
Posterior to death
Initial to creation
the exponent of breath.


शान्ति


After 56.5 long hours of intensive travel by air,train,bus and shared cabs we found ourselves in gangtok. The roads were long. Calcutta was beauty broken down.blackouts.reservation counters.Yellowtaxis.Kohl lined eyes. kali at every corner. The city of joy.
Calcutta was red.wasbrown. was smoke curling. was bodies burning. Summer sinks its teeth into our flesh. Lost. Alive.


16 long hours in a bus. I long for peace and it finds me. green as apple. green as the sea. Fields spread themselves like cordouroy. Blue skies. Leaving the dust of siliguri behind us. A shared cab. secretly smoked cigarettes. Through bengal into Sikkim. I've been looking for divinity and find it in flowers. The border approaches. A rainbow coloured checkpost. Prayer flags.peace. lotuses. Love. Coconut water. The river.. The River Teesta is white like bone and becomes the long spinal column of the land.
Free.
A cat once told me that pebbles near the river are souls in search of peace.
I now understand this silence.

"Seeing Radha stand alone, Krishna came from behind and blindfolded her with his hands. But his hands could not fully cover her large and elongated eyes. They shone out from within his fingers as a serpent's gem which it had disgorged and hid between its fangs;" or as Rahu finding the sun and Mars together, had pounced and held them fast. Krishna does not have any self-interest, for there is nothing for him to desire or achieve. But he removes the grief of separation of those whom he loves. His eyes came close to Radha's, and his lips were on hers. It was as though the lotuses forgetting their opposition to the moon had opened their petals to be kissed by the moon rays. Says Suradasa, Krishna's loving embrace removed from Radha. the sorrow of her parting. "