A bit of God in every photograph

A bit of God in every photograph

Fine eye

God is everywhere. You have heard the adage, now to believe it, you only have to see graphic designer Sanjay Nanda’s photographs.

God is on walls, doors of houses, festivals, river ghats, dilapidated forts and also small little roadside shrines. In short, look anywhere with an eager eye and you will find God, says Sanjay Nanda with his photo exhibition ‘Mystic Expressions.’

Sanjay, 40, is a graphic designer by profession and passionate about photography. In the course of taking several photographs during his work as a graphic designer, he fell in love with this art, picked up a digital camera about five years ago and began to travel. When he realised that he has a number of photographs, coincidentally, on the subject of ‘symbolism in faith,’ he put them together in this exhibition.

‘Mystic Expressions’ has a total of 36 photographs taken in various locales of Delhi, Banaras, Mathura and Dharamsala. There is nothing really spectacular about them. In fact, the beauty of the photographs in ‘Mystic…’ is that they are very simple.

The photographer has been able to extract art out of ordinary surroundings and convert them into visually appealing images.

A number of these photographs are that of spaces created in walls in the shape of a temple with an idol or two placed in them. The walls are colourful, even though peeling off in places, and the adorable little statues in them are a pleasure to behold.

One of them shows an electrical wire winding its way up from one such shrine to a bulb above, and is cheekily named ‘power of faith.’

Then there are writings on walls like ‘Shubh labh’ and Shree Ram,’ decorations and calendars with pictures of gods and goddesses, and palm prints as put up by newly wed brides. Sanjay says, “I find them very fascinating. They may be trivial to us but are a sign of faith to many people.”

Then there are pictures of Dharamsala where you see  prayer flags on mountain tops, views of monasteries, prayer wheels therein, yellowed scriptures, monks meditating and even chopping vegetables. The last one’s called ‘chopping meditating.’

Besides, you will find a few photographs of pundits on river ghats, a jaali of a mosque with several threads tied on it, a shot of a warrior Sikh at Golden Temple, Amritsar, and lastly two of Holi  in Barsana in Mathura.

Sanjay says, “In India especially one does not need to visit any house of worship to find faith. So much of it is practiced in the open. It may not be completely religious but it has a great significance in the socio-cultural-religious context of the people in question.

In my travels across India, I noticed this thing and tried to capture it in my lens. There is a bit of India in each of my pictures. Isn’t it?”

We say, a bit of God too.

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