KASI


Kasi, also known as Varanasi and Benaras, is an ancient pilgrimage site in India. In 2005, I visited Kasi for the first time. I felt engulfed by the river Ganga, hundreds of temples, mosques, people praying, bathing, taking boat rides, people relaxing, washing their clothes, and cremating their dead.



This place was unlike anything I’ve ever seen before or since. There was a strange attraction to it, and it drew me back over and over again for several years. I could not see it as single location anymore, nor can I remember it as a separate image anymore.


For over ten years, I've been photographing this fascinating city. I decided not to put the viewfinder to my eyes, instead kept the camera at waist level with a fixed lens. Releasing the shutter button when I see something that moves me. When I run out of the film, I would reload and shoot again. I had no idea which images were superimposed over another. This technique forced me to discard composition and exposure but made me see - to keep my eyes open and to be aware of all the things in front me and acknowledging that moment that moves me by pressing the shutter button of the camera. The composition came later as I processed the film and selected the image not according to their position on a 35mm strip, but on a frame that took me back to the place.


My photographs of Kasi is closer to my experience of the place; it deals with acts that are repeated throughout life, in the hope that something better would come from it. 

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