David de Souza: The philosophical photographer
Viewers may well expect the most unexpected from David de Souza's photography which invokes surprise and wonder at best and utter disbelief at worst. His solo exhibition titled “Dreams” was inaugurated on January 23 at Drik Gallery 1. The photographs on display are some of the most experimental and interesting of the works featured in the exhibitions of Chobi Mela VI.
David's works in recent years reflect his interest in psychoanalysis, dreams, and Indian mythology. When asked about this alleged surrealism in his works, he said: “I'd rather question what is realism? The concept 'realism' is based on the assumption that something is absolutely real; therefore, some form of representation can be surreal. I come from a land where nothing is real. Everything is Maya, or illusion. There is a large component of Hindu thought that talks of Maya: everything that you can see, touch and experience in space and time may seem real to you but actually, these are illusions.”
When asked to explain the ideas in simpler words, he said: “I can see you sitting here talking to me. In my three-dimensional stereovision you seem real. But the real experience of you is in my head -- an impression, if you like. Similarly, when I'm gone, you'll have an impression of me. And I'll never be able to know how complicated that impression is.”
When asked what he thinks about language and photography as tools of communication, he said: “Like photography, language is a mode of communication, and it's not complete. I will never be able to express, in words, my exact impression of you. Thoughts are too complicated for that.”
It is evident from the photographs displayed that he had experimented with the dimension of the subjects he photographed. He comments: “In my opinion, we photographers are somewhat obsessed with two dimension, which is, no doubt, wonderful. But I wonder if I could do something with a two dimensional photograph to give a greater expression of experience, which is inside of me.”
He added: “All forms of expression, I think, are in essence, an attempt to communicate the experienced moment as completely as possible. So as a photographer, I wonder if something could be doneusing technology or something -- to give another dimension to photographs. Note that I'm not saying that everyone should do that. All I'm asking is if it's possible to add another dimension to our work.”
David de Souza's exhibition will end on February 3.