This collection of wovens is inspired by the classical Indian album ‘Chants of India’ by Ravi Shankar, produced by George Harrison. The album is consists of a collection of Vedic and other Hindu sacred prayers. This music, to me, creates peace of mind, a sense of safety and the utmost nostalgia. As a youngster growing up in India, ‘Chants of India’ protected me from the monsters under my bed, and as I grew older, it became my escape into meditation.
In order to create something tactile through this music I first needed to visualize what I heard; the atmosphere the sounds create in my mind. I had to find the kind of imagery that captured the distinctive nostalgic serenity created by the music, through which I would then find my colour palette, texture and composition. I found this inspiration in Steve McCurry’s photography of India during the monsoon. They capture a somber, peaceful and luscious atmosphere through a combination of images of nature and the people within the chaos and rains of India. The colours are organic, and natural, the wetness creating a damp gleam through the photographs.
The deflected pick structure within the fabrics with the use of fine and thick textured organic looking yarns help convey the contrasts within the landscapes captured in the photography and also the highs and lows within the music; the deeper somber tones versus the lighter happier beats. Certain sounds and songs in the album create a subtle foreboding atmosphere which is captured through the darker rougher and thicker yarns used against the finer, smoother, luster yarns.