A Visual Dialogue with Imdad Barbhuyan
Interview: Team Lune
Pictured above: Imdad wears From The Journal Of... and Lunar World
Can you describe your beautiful work to us?
Hello! I am a visual artist working with still lifes, portraits, performance and writing. Centered around themes of nature, intimacy, memory and desire, my work tries to celebrate the poetry in the ordinary and mundane, hoping to inspire contemplation and encourage a deeper and more sensitive understanding of our relationship with nature.
What’s your creative process like?
My work and the creation of it is not separate from my life. I like to think that my creative process is just living and moving around, soaking things up. The camera simply helps me consummate the journey of seeing and being inspired by the things and life around. I like visiting gardens, to simply walk around with a friend and talk, rest under a tree, stare at all the beautiful flowers or sit next to the water. I also frequently go to old markets for inspiration; I am an introvert but I love busy and crowded places. Through this act of constantly looking at people and movement, I am always questioning and moulding my ideas of culture and beauty.
Our Chrysalis pendant is inspired by the idea of cocooning and then blooming. Could you describe a moment in your life where this helped you greatly?
With every passing year, I realise that life moves in circles. We might grow in different directions, but the most fundamental aspects of our lives stay the same and repeat like the seasons. Revisiting similar phases of cocooning and blooming, time and again. The most significant moment I would say has to be when I graduated from architecture and I had no idea how to move ahead, what to choose as my first step towards this world that I could envision for myself. I stayed home for four months doing absolutely nothing and a lot of thinking. But when I took my friend’s advice and came back to the city, opportunities just started coming my way.
Butterflies represent transformation, and we are so inspired by it especially during the uncertainty of lockdowns. Was there a creative transformation for you? How do you break free from creative blocks ?
The lockdown allowed for a slower and more natural pace, which was conducive to a sincere exploration of more meaningful projects. It brought forth an opportunity for me to spend time revisiting and analysing my work. Like everyone else, I found myself with ample time but limited resources; feeling confined and vulnerable, which opened doors to a completely new world for me.
I like to think that we are not meant to be inspired and creating all the time. So I am okay with being in harmony with periods of creative abundance and paucity. Which is honestly how it is for me all the time, so I’ve never experienced a creative block (in the traditional sense of the word) because there hasn't been a time when I felt like I couldn't create but wanted to or vice versa. I wouldn't try to force past it, I would sit and breathe within it. Focus on other things and then come back to it when I'm ready.
Can you tell us a little bit about this shoot? Your approach?
Transformation is often perceived through external factors and so I liked the idea of embodying the energy of forces that bring forth change, and externalise that though my images. This is my interpretation of the vastness of our universe, our place in it and the unknown mysteries of life that connect us. The universe is expanding within me, as I prepare in my own shell, to be new again.