Thursday, September 17, 2009

qarrtsiluni: Lung Ta (wind words)

"This time we’re looking for words of power: curses, spells, charms, prayers, incantations, mantras, sacred scriptures, explicit performative utterances, oaths, or legal instruments. Submissions may consist entirely of such super-charged language, or may riff upon or explore such language. Submissions of visual art may of course take a more figurative approach to the topic."

said the qarrtsiluni call for submissions. right after reading it, i started to browse photo files, hoping to come across a clue how to approach the theme. then a memory of a photo popped up: prayer flags. yes! i thought, and located the photo. and had to realize: this won't really work.

now what?

the answer arrived a week later, with a bbq invitation that included the line: "when you see the prayer flags in front of the house, you know you are in the right place."

the day before the invitation, it rained. then the skies cleared, and there was this light breeze in the air. i took my camera, still not knowing if this might work out. it did. the story of that place is up here, in the blueprint photo pages: prayer flags. i took about a dozen pictures, and back home, tried various crops. two worked out really well. but they were missing something, i felt. so i started to visit pages about prayer flags. and then put the essence of it in 2 lines, to accompany the photos.

here the link to the wind words: Lung Ta

tiny detail: the title - "lung ta" is the tibetan term for the horizontal prayer flags, it means: "wind horse". if you look closely, you can actually see the shape of a horse ("ta") on the red flag in the upper image, it's one of the traditional symbols printed on prayer flags, representing the transformation from bad fortune to good fortune.

and while there, check out the podcast (speaker/arrow symbol beneath the title) - it offers a brief and compelling introduction to the "words of power" issue, and also refers to the 'Lung Ta' piece.


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