Archive for woman

Bette Davis Eyes

Posted in Dreams of An Enthralling India In Colour with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2013 by designldg

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“…She’ll expose you, when she snows you
Off your feet with the crumbs she throws you
She’s ferocious and she knows just
What it takes to make a crow blush
All the boys think she’s a spy
She’s got Bette Davis eyes…”
(From “Bette Davis Eyes” by Donna Weiss and Jackie DeShannon)

Those people bargaining religious accessories in front of the Swami Narayan Mandir (temple) in Varanasi (Benaras) caught my attention and especially the lady wearing the yellow sari who had a few expressions reminding me of Bette Davis…

This is a link to an amazing version of this song by Karen Souza, youtu.be/ydTzfPBw_tY

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Becoming A Sati

Posted in The Oldest Living City in the World with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2013 by designldg

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“Let these women, whose husbands are worthy and are living, enter the house with ghee (applied) as corrylium ( to their eyes).
Let these wives first step into the pyre, tearless without any affliction and well adorned.”
(Rig Veda X.18.7 )

This is a picture of a Sati stone sculpture shot near Raj ghat along the Ganges in Varanasi (Benaras).
This statue shows a married couple and it is marking the site where a woman died on the funeral pyre of her husband.
Nowadays many of these stones are worshipped as images of Shiva and Parvati.
The practice is banned since 1829.

The term is derived from the original name of the goddess Sati, who self-immolated because she was unable to bear her father Daksha’s humiliation of her (living) husband Shiva.
It may also be used to refer to the widow.
A sati is now sometimes interpreted as “chaste woman”.
Sati appears in both Hindi and Sanskrit texts, where it is synonymous with “good wife”; the term suttee was commonly used by Anglo-Indian English writers.

(Being the son of a contemporary sati, I carry ambivalent thoughts for those ladies even though I have a deep respect for their courage)

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© All photographs are copyrighted and all rights reserved.
Please do not use any photographs without permission (even for private use).
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The Unbearable Lightness of Being

Posted in Banarsi (Portraits) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 27, 2013 by designldg

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“Her drama was a drama not of heaviness but of lightness.
What fell to her lot was not the burden but the unbearable lightness of being.”
(From “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” by Milan Kundera)

This is one of my favourite sentences by Milan Kundera which I kept in mind since his book was published.
Challenging Friedrich Nietzsche’s concept of eternal recurrence (the idea that the universe and its events have already occurred and will recur ad infinitum), the story’s thematic meditations posit the alternative; that each person has only one life to live, and that which occurs in life occurs only once and never again — thus the “lightness” of being.
In contrast, the concept of eternal recurrence imposes a “heaviness” on our lives and on the decisions we make (to borrow from Nietzsche’s metaphor, it gives them “weight”.)
Nietzsche believed this heaviness could be either a tremendous burden or great benefit depending on the individual’s perspective…

I met this lady at a gas pump on the road between Delhi and Varanasi.
Her expression, her saree and the way she wrapped it reminded of some Renaissance Italian paintings showing the Madonna.
Maybe the concept of eternal recurrence happens…maybe in another life this lady inspired a Master of the XVI°…”khabi khabie”…

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© All photographs are copyrighted and all rights reserved.
Please do not use any photographs without permission (even for private use).
The use of any work without consent of the artist is PROHIBITED and will lead automatically to consequences.

Related To the whole world

Posted in The Oldest Living City in the World with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 17, 2013 by designldg

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“As a woman I have no country.
As a woman I want no country.
As a woman, my country is the whole world.”
(Virginia Woolf – English writer, 1882–1941)

This lady was changing clothes after having a bath in the holy waters of the Ganges in Varanasi (Benaras).

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© All photographs are copyrighted and all rights reserved.
Please do not use any photographs without permission (even for private use).
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An Invincible Summer

Posted in Timeless Black & White with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 17, 2013 by designldg

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“In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.”
(Albert Camus – French Nobel Prize winning author, 1913-1960)

This is a scan of one of my first pictures shot with a Canon A1.
I was a young art student and I had that camera which I didn’t know how to use.
As there was a photography class in the school, I asked the teacher to explain me what to do and this is how I started taking pictures.
All the students used to pose for each other and one afternoon I took some pictures of Megan in the clearing of a wood nearby.
It was a wonderful summer, I was 18 and anything was possible…
Today I understand the words of Camus so well as that invincible summer is still laying within me…

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Please do not use any photographs without permission (even for private use).
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Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat

Posted in Timeless Black & White with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 17, 2013 by designldg

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“…Is jagaa hum mile phool dil mein khile
Kya khabar, kya pataa hum mein tum mein ho kya
Baaton baaton mein kabhi, aankhon aakhon mein kabhi…”
(…We meet in this place and flowers bloom in my heart
Who knows what there is in you and me
Sometimes in words, sometimes in eyes…)
(From the song “Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat”)

This picture was shot in the Lodi Gardens in Delhi where I saw this couple in love enjoying a moment of cool breeze before sunset…

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© All photographs are copyrighted and all rights reserved.
Please do not use any photographs without permission (even for private use).
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Becoming Everything

Posted in Timeless Black & White with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 17, 2013 by designldg

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“Knock, And He’ll open the door
Vanish, And He’ll make you shine like the sun
Fall, And He’ll raise you to the heavens
Become nothing, And He’ll turn you into everything.”
(Rumi (Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Balkhi) – Persian poet and Sufi mystic, 1207-1273)

This picture was shot at the entrance of a little temple which is on the last floor of the massive palace standing at Balaji Ghat along the Ganges in Varanasi (Benaras).
I was standing at the end of a long dark staircase where I could listen to some bat echolocation calls providing a mysterious atmosphere and suddenly a man opened the door.
The shrine was absorbed by a warm light, there was a feeling of deep quietness and devotion, maybe it was led by the breath of the Divine.
Then from nothing everything became possible…

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© All photographs are copyrighted and all rights reserved.
Please do not use any photographs without permission (even for private use).
The use of any work without consent of the artist is PROHIBITED and will lead automatically to consequences.