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Reflecting 70’s in ‘Boudhanath 1972’
Taragaon Museum based at Boudha, Kathmandu, is currently garnered with photo exhibition ‘Boudhanath 1972’ by Danish visual fine artist Mette Ussing. The exhibition that began on October 14 showcases both black & white and color photographs taken in 1972 when Ussing first visited Nepal.
She had spent a good part of her time in the Buddhist village of Boudhanath, which was then surrounded on all sides by agricultural fields and was made up of a single row of houses encircling the large old Boudhanath Stupa.
She lived by the stupa and came in close contact with the locals. She experienced Buddhist traditions and their daily life first hand. The photographs in the exhibition are the evidence of her stay where she has captured the action of people along with their emotions. Her photographs narrate the way of living and the beauty of the past, which is somewhat lost in the urbanized valley of modern times.
In one of the black & white photographs, a group of people donned in traditional Sherpa attire are engaged in cleaning the stupa area. Ussing has captured not only their actions but also their merry expressions of being involved in a community work.
Meanwhile, the exhibition also displays photographs around the Kathmandu Valley. Being in Kathmandu in those days, she had an opportunity to witness things from the past, which were often forgotten, but were essential to the life of people in the valley.
In a colored photograph, she has captured Sundhara where men and women are seen busy washing clothes and bathing. And looking or thinking about the present condition of Sundhara one can only feel sorry for the pitiable condition of one of Kathmandu’s landmarks.
The exhibition that gives a nostalgic feel of the 70’s continues till Saturday.