by Nikki Culley
Holi Hai! Residency DAY TWO: It was golden hour by the time we reached the Jamid Masjid mosque. Earlier in the day we had made the journey from Vadodara city out to a homestay in rural Kadwal County.
The pink spring blossoms of Boungainvillia trees covered the lawns around the mosque and peppered the surface of the site’s small lake, that was flanked by several white stone stairways, with birds circling the minarets as we wandered the grounds. It was a quiet moment for artists to take photographs in the softer late afternoon light.
The mosque is considered one of the finest in Gujarat with its combination Indo-Islamic architectural style. It is set on a high plinth and its central dome elevated to let natural light and ventilation into the main structure.
All around, in the neighbouring forests, are also the fiery orange spring Palash blossoms known as the Flame of the Forest. An idea for the residency was to learn the process of reducing down the petals for their saffron pigment, as practiced by the tribal communities, to make coloured inks to be used on photographic images.