Anuj Ambalal

Everything about Nathdwara fascinates me. This quaint little town near Udaipur has all it takes to capture my imagination. A seeming chaos is what welcomed me as I entered the town for the first time as a kid. But over the years as I rambled along the narrow sinuous streets - without trying to decipher its randomness, the magic started to unveil. This temple town comes across as a place bumbling with people and a flurry of activity. But then, as I wandered around exploring it, I experienced a strange feeling of stillness - almost timelessness - about it. I was struck by this duality and it eventually became bit of a challenge to depict it through photography - especially when I have had no formal training of the medium. Another interesting aspect about the place is the panache with which its people use an array of strong vibrant contrasting colours around them. All around the town the walls of houses and temples are decorated with inconspicuous frescos & religious graffitis. These combined with its unique and distinct architectural idiom has successfully created an amazingly tactile, dynamic and a touching visual experience, and it is the ease and playfulness with which the people have derived such high aesthetics is something that never fails to amaze me. Three years back I started taking photographs of the town with an intention to document it and also to capture these subtle nuances that form the core of the Nathdwara aesthetics. This exhibition is an attempt to relive that visual experience.

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