In the form of a video project called Loss,Â Saadiya Kochar portrayedÂ a story about the anguish and longing of the people of Kashmir and of the artist who visits the valley. Primarily made with stills, the video project is in three parts.Â Three stories, one of the Muslims, the other of the Pandits and the last one of the artist are bound together by a common thread that reveals the way in which different people cope with loss. From among the 80 stills which beautifully combine to make the film, Saadiya shared with us some amazing photographs.
Part 1-During the unrest of 2010 in Kashmir, over a hundred boys were booked under the Public Safety Act & detained without fair trails.Â Amnesty has called for its abolition since it is considered to facilitate the practice of torture. A lot of the boys who are booked are protestors, wanting a free state. But some living in specific localities get caught in the midst of violent situations, without actively participating. This part is a recreation of such a situation. The artist goes to the Valley and meets a young boy who acts as her guide. In the midst of showing her around he gets caught by the authorities for being seen at the protests. While he’s being tortured he has sudden flashes of memories of his childhood and of Kashmiri life. In the end the woman leaves and he dies on the bus stand. This part of the film is inspired by Chris Marker’s La Jetee, a movie made with stills in 1962 that shows a man dying.
PART 2– In the 1990’s Kashmiri Pandits left their homeland. This was a forceful migration; of what some believe to be, of over aÂ 1, 00,000 people. The Pandit exodus made people, migrants in their own land. Most of them could never return to Kashmir. But then some did. In part two the artist interviews Pandits about their experiences of being in Kashmir and why they chose to come back or live there.
Part 3– Is about the loss that the artist experiences due to which she goes to Kashmir. Loss, is a 24 minute film about the way the artist views Kashmir over a period of four years.
[box bg=”#fdf78c” color=”#000″]Saadiya Kochar started her career at the age of 24 by doing a book on nudes, titled Being. It explored the questions of existence through the naked form. She then went on to organise a festival on Sufism at The Attic where she also held an exhibition. Saadiya’s career has never followed the conventional path, having had 3 solo exhibitions in 9 years, this one being her 4th. In 2008 she started working on her film and books on Kashmir. The loss of her brother drove her constantly to a place where she felt at peace with people who were dealing with their own heartbreaks. In between all this, she was invited by the Centre Pompiduo, in Paris to assist. Saadiya has participated in various group shows and her works have been shown in Spain, Germany and London etc. All photographs are a copyright of Saadiya Kochar.Â [/box]