Spatters of black ink across thick paper with charred edges and sepia tones unravel into a story. A story of a dysfunctional, morbid word plagued by death, disease, destruction, vices and suffering. Barriers crumble, beliefs disappear, insanity becomes a spectrum not a border, darkness is allowed to not just permeate but flourish. Nothing remains sacred or perhaps everything is.
But for artist and photographer, Ari Jayprakash who has created the Kuru Chronicles (which derives its name from a disease affecting cannibals when they consume human brain matter) in collaboration with writer Anisha Sridhar, this is nothing more than an artistic expression of an interesting form of spirituality, “We knew there was stuff here that may make people uncomfortable but we will stick to that,” he says, rather vehemently. “Freedom of thought and expression is an essential aspect of artistic evolution and we have restricted ourselves too long.” He believes however, that this is changing for the better, “People are beginning to push boundaries. I think India will produce a lot of interesting art, music, dance and theatre over the next few years,” he adds.
His own artwork (he refers to it as Kuru art) certainly not just pushes boundaries but tramples all over them, leaving the viewer too enthralled to even notice that they existed in the first place. “Kuru uses black ink done mainly with a calligraphy pen. At the end of the execution the pictures are burnt. The burning was done as an offering to the fire God and also because it gives it an old rustic sort of look and an interesting shading.”
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