F & T Questionnaire:
Our next F & T artist is the profoundly articulate Kiran Chandra. Her work is imbued with a fluency for language that allows her to explore it as a material in itself, something to be played with and exposed for its political and alchemical possibilities. To be articulate can also mean, "to form a joint," i.e., "the mandible is a solid piece articulating with the head." It is in this way as well that Kiran's work allows for meaning and associations of text to form joints and rhizomatic offshoots, layering images, objects, video and sound to span vast conceptual distances within a single piece. She applies the same poetic handling to her questionnaire, reminding us to take seriously the depth, responsiveness, and potential that exists in the interactions we have with beings (be they human, plant, place, or words) every day.
Describe a place in the world where you have felt most alive:
There are so many places and times- it’s hard to separate them.
While looking at the night sky at Pangong Lake, Ladhak, being pummeled by the ocean, Island State Beach Park, walking barefoot for seven hours in the Lacondon jungle. Reading a terrific piece of writing or looking at a beautiful form or when in the company of those dearest to me.
Share an image that you return to often:
In this image saturated world we live in- that is hard to discern.
I am going to go with what I consider my archetypal image: the triangle.
What is the last thing you read that mattered to you? What will you read next?
The Spiritual Journey of Alejandro Jowdorowsky, by Jodorowsky and bell hooks’ Teaching to Transgress. I am going to read Agua Viva by Clarice Lispector next.
Describe an object that intrigues you:
These seven striped agate stones I bought in Gotenburg, but are from Brazil. They are navy blue, green, purple, pink and sea-foam. Agates are supposed to be formed in nodules, in spaces between volcanic rocks. Looking at them time feels visible, layers or pools of colors band out in concentric formations. The ones I have are cut transectionally: they look like a cross section of the brain, they also look like ‘yonis’.
What must change?
Our thinking and our actions.
How can we heal?
I don’t have an answer but I suppose- by accepting ourselves and others as they are. By being as clear eyed as we can be. By not having too many conceptual distinctions amongst and between things. By developing empathy and compassion.
If you could instantly have any skill or ability what would it be?
To fly, no to teleport, to be in multiple places at the same time!
Realistically though: to play drums - possessed with the finest sense of rhythm.
What makes you laugh until you cry?
Charlie Chaplin films.
As a member of the global community, what is your greatest concern?
Poverty of the soul and what we are doing to the rivers, mountains, earth, forests, minerals, air and ourselves.
Describe a non-human being you’ve interacted with.
My house plants: I am at their beck and call - ‘Kiran! feed me, move me, touch me- like this not like that- the mice are chewing my new green leaves: do something!’
They have really particular characteristics: One of them is a total show off, one is always happy to be in the back ground, grateful, even to be watered. One of them took a long time to adjust to our home, years even, then it finally communicated with me about where it would rather be in relation to the light.
Dredds, our variegated pothos, is over 10 feet long has been with us for the last seven years. We refer to it as a he, I am not sure why? It’s had generations of saplings, that are in homes of friends. Dredds always says hello by entangling it’s vines into my hair or sweater. I return the affection by checking how dry the soil feels, turning the container, or simply saying hello back.
What is your mantra?
Of late it’s been “keep your heart open and your eyes shut tight: what will be will be”- from a song by Fleetwood Mac, I think of it as another iteration of empty mind, full heart.
What can art do?
Everything and nothing, everything while you expect nothing.