Two women stroll among the walls of Halebid, built in the 9th century

Sharing experiences from travels is a bit like sharing dreams: The iconography and narrative are personal and not well suited for public discourse. So other than sharing the rudimentaries, my report on my time in India will be succinct.

A phrase or two from Mira Schor‘s juicy and very personal book, A Decade of Negative Thinking, captures much of what I am feeling now that I am back home: “I’ve wished that I could give my students and myself the gift of time, time to work or not work in the studio, and, more importantly, to forget about ART; time to just take a walk…”

That is what this trip to southern India was for me: time away from the studio, a hiatus in thinking about art making and the world we have created around that rarefied activity. Yes I took 2600 photographs which serve as a kind of quick capture sketchbook/scrapbook. But making art was not on my mind at all. In a culture that old and that confoundingly complex, stepping away from my life was a much better way to offer up an open, fertile, receptive spirit. The resonance is outside of language and still echoing.


Hindu shrine at the top of the Fort hill in Hyderabad


Hampi’s Vittala temple, known as the musical temple because striking the columnns produces musical tones


Inscription at Hampi


The exquisite Chitrangini Mahal (or Lotus Mahal) in the Zenana Enclosure, Hampi


Figures from the 12th century goparum at Belur which effortlessly incorporate images from the Kama Sutra


The lacey Chola temples at Thanjavur


Entrance to the Ekambaranathar temple in Kanchipuram


Enchanting and sacred Madurai, pilgrim site


Rajasthani pilgrims at Chidambaram


Meal time at the Children’s Aid Society in Hyderabad


Lord Gommateshwara, the world’s largest monolithic stone statue, at the Jain temple in Shravanabelagola


Students at Tiruchchirappalli (Trichy)


Hampi, from a distance


Sign to the pilgrimage site, Chamundi Hill in Mysore


Altar for Saraswati

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