Madhu Pandit’s romance with the moon began as a starry-eyed teen when she would gaze at it for hours. "Even when I grew up, I could connect with the phases of the moon, both spiritually and emotionally," says the Chandigarh-based photographer. "Infact, it’s been scientifically proven that the moon affects our moods and helps our spiritual journey," adds the 41-year-old. Taking her love for the celestial being a step ahead, Gupta has captured the 28 phases of the moon in her photo exhibition, Mehnaaz — The Moon. The photographs will be displayed at the Piramal Gallery, NCPA from January 16- Jan 25.
The inspiration for the project came to her while reading an article last year about how the NASA website became the basis for Gulzar’s Pluto Poems. Pandit, who works as a fashion and product photographer, soon began photographing the moon from her window and terrace. "I would wait under street lights or head to the countryside to capture the right moment. It was not easy. Sometimes, clouds would come in the way and I would have to wait till the wee hours of the morning to get the right frame."
Pandit’s photographs are like virtual paintings where she has played around with street lights vis-à-vis the moon, using slow shutter speed to create a stunning canvas. You can catch a silhouette of a woman as crescents clutter the frame or the moon’s light behind the statue of a Buddha. It’s not just the moon, but even the crimson hues of the sky that find a prominent place in her photographs. Pandit admits being smitten by stars, too. "But you need expensive equipment for that.
I just have a Canon 60," she smiles.
The year-long experience, she says, has been uplifting. "I would wait for hours, but not once did I get bored. The moon, for me, was like a human being that would change expressions night after night. It continues to intrigue me."
WHERE: Piramal Gallery-NCPA, Nariman Point, NCPA Marg,
WHEN: JAN 16 – 25, 12 PM – 8 PM