Within Without | Briana Blasko

2  -  30 December, 2017


 Artist: Briana Blasko

Title: ‘Within Without’
Dates: December 2-31, 2017

Venue:  Vadehra Art Gallery, D-53 Defence Colony, New Delhi 110024
Time: 11 am- 7 pm (Monday to Saturday) 


Vadehra Art Gallery is proud to present an exhibition of artist Briana Blasko’s photographic series documenting the lives of practicing Jains, Buddhists, Sufis, Hindus and a Catholic priest whom she met along her four-year long expedition across India, Nepal and Bhutan that included locations like Calicut, Indore, Mt. Carmel Church (Mumbai), Uttarkashi, villages in Jharkand, Bihar and Parping (Nepal), amongst others. Titled ‘Within Without’, the exhibition comprises a series of 71 photographs documenting the daily life and rituals of the yogis. Departing from a focus on religion and by extension, the exotic lens through which India has historically been represented by the West, the series intends to emphasize more on the formal minutiae and innate interconnectedness that she experienced in their presence. Following her instinct around the varied cultural contours, Briana’s series of photographs represents the artist’s dilemmas and spiritual inquires as they manifested during her journey across borders.
Speaking of the experience, Briana writes:  “Although I am looking at people who belong to specific religions, this book is not intended to be about religion, rather it aims to reflect an innate interconnectedness of different ways of being. As I photographed practitioners of different spiritual traditions, I noticed the calming rhythm of the repetition of movements, stances, postures – a Jain monk waving a white cloth with his arm raised as a symbol of non-violence, or a Buddhist tokden blessing someone with both his arms outstretched. In the physical reach of the arm or a bending of the torso with an extension of breath, I observe the expansion of the mind. Over time, taking a picture has become an afterthought. I journeyed to faraway places, and then sometimes decided to not take a picture at all. In photography, if you don’t take a picture it’s as if the event did not happen, but there seems to be a part of me that believes that sometimes not taking a picture is just as valuable. In some really precious moments, I chose to be with someone and simply experience their presence, without taking a photograph. The compilation of these images also reflects this – of going back and forth between doing something and not doing something. The title Within Without in a way represents this do or don’t that is constantly happening in every moment. For me this book is a way of sharing my journey of spiritual inquiry, its value lies in the quiet experiences with people, listening to their stories and feeling their spirit. This is what I hope to most give to you.” 

Briana Blasko is a San Francisco-born portrait photographer who divides her time between India and California. Prior to 2008, she lived in New York for twelve years and photographed contemporary dance for the New York Times. For the past nine years, she has been quietly crisscrossing the Indian sub-continent to document the region’s rich traditions of textiles and dance and the interplay between the two. Her work has culminated in the production of a series of photographic works, including Dance of the Weave which has been exhibited in India, London and the New York Public Library for Performing Arts at Lincoln Center. Her photographs have appeared in numerous publications and have been exhibited in India at the Vadehra Art Gallery, Prince of Wales Museum, Kaladham Museum and abroad. A publication of Within Without: The Path of the Yogi by Harper Collins will also be released during the exhibition.

For more information regarding the exhibition, please write to us at ritika@vadehraart.com or call us at +91 11 46103550/ 46103551/ 65474005