I have always wanted to travel to India, to the sacred city of Varanasi in particular. It is so spiritual, chaotic, densely populated and full of life, and to me feels like the real India, as though it represents the essence of the culture. I travelled alone which in one way made me more vulnerable, but at the same time, made meeting new people easier. Being alone allowed me to move about the city at my own speed, and without the constraints of others. In the course of my daily walks through the labyrinths of old Varanasi and by the Ganges River, I was able to interact with people for varying periods of time, and occasionally be invited into homes, neighbourhoods or to share experiences. Some encounters were so brief that not a single word spoken, but yet a connection was made and they became deep and meaningful, at times including spiritual sensations of peace and stillness. These moments of more intimate access enabled me to photograph the city and its people in personal ways, capturing moods, atmospheres and quiet private glimpses into day to day life.
(A selected range of pictures from the project).
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