Narrow Road To The Inner Region 奥の細道: Words, Images and Sounds on the Way
Images and video by Oleg Yuzefpolsky
This series, “Narrow Road To The Inner Region 奥の細道,” is dedicated with Love to, and blessed and inspired by, the Mighty Himalayas herself and her beautiful people. “Narrow Road” is also an homage to the poet Matsuo Basho, a dear inspiration whose poetic travelogues have guided people like me for the past 300 years. In this way, through my visual travelogues, creative energies of ancient East converge with the musical drive of today’s world and bring Inspiration and Awe to my heart. I hope you feel it too.
Episode 1: Walking through Sikkim
Once in the freezing winter, i happened to stumble upon a remote monastery late at night. The caretaker warmly welcomed me with a cup of hot tea and let me stay over. As we started talking, it turned out that the main temple of the monastery was severely damaged during a recent earthquake and monks were figuring out the way to fix incredibly thick stone walls. The caretaker mentioned that they were worried about the wall-paintings and asked me if i could take pictures of them.
The next day i photographed for 15 hours as if entering a different world and dimension, through every brushstroke and color on the walls left by thangka-painters. More than in the camera, those powerful images left their impression in me deeply. Next morning, while saying good-bye to the head-monk, i told him that i hoped that reconstruction of the temple wouldn’t hurt the wall-paintings. He looked at me and said: What are you talking about? There is no way around fixing the walls – all paintings will be gone next week. . .