4 MIN READ
After a week of unprecedented pollution, Nepal is finally breathing free. But masks are still mandatory as the threat of a second wave has yet to subside. Although cases haven’t risen exponentially in Nepal, like they did in India, there is still a possibility that Covid-19 has yet to run its course.
With things standing uncertain, The Record once again looks towards visual artists for their take on the lockdown and the pandemic with the third edition of our mini-series.
Shraddha Shrestha is an independent muralist, illustrator, and visual artist based in Kathmandu. She has a Master of Design in illustration from the Glasgow School of Art and has been active in the street art scene in Kathmandu since 2011. She is currently part of an illustrators’ collective called Virangana Comics and recently published the first all-women comic anthology in Nepal. Growing up in the aesthetically rich city of Patan has played a big part in her journey as an artist.
This artwork was initially done as a live drawing on Instagram for Virangana comics. It is dedicated to all the migrant workers who had to walk hundreds of kilometers on foot to return back to their homes and went through a generally tough time during the nationwide lockdown.
Sanjeep Maharjan is a visual artist and sculptor with an MA in Fine Arts. Currently, he is a lecturer for Sculpture and World Art Studies at the Department of Art and Design at Kathmandu University’s School of Arts. He also works as an illustrator and designer, and facilitates workshops on visual arts and art education.
Bikram and Biswash
The act of sketching in pencil and tints has a certain calming quality in its momentum. The hours spent sketching this portrait got me settled and sedimented against the fascinating manifestations of uncertainty. As it is said, little steps persistently take a person to places far and beyond. Similarly, small strokes and lines took the maker here to a space full of memories, joy, comfort and love.
Laxmi Tamang worked as a child journalist at Radio Sagarmatha, where she hosted the ‘Sunau Bolau’ program for four years. Her book ‘Little Mi Mi’s Magic Eyes’ was published in 2017 in Singapore. Tamang has been passionate about art ever since she was a child.
The head – and with it, the mind – is the heaviest part of the body. And it finds rest upon a sirani, which shares our inner pain and emotions. Conversations with a sirani are kept secret and the emotions that we share on it help to relieve pain and suffering. Our sirani has seen and felt more about our feelings – more so than our friends and family. The impression upon it of our body or the traces of saliva show our tiredness. We dream upon our sirani. It is a collection of dreams and emotions, the tears it wiped when nobody even cared to look. It is the silent refuge where we express our sorrows that can’t be revealed to the world.
Pranaya Dhakhwa is a freelance photographer and designer based in Kathmandu.
On December 20, my family, including me, tested positive for Covid-19. Before the results came, I had met two of my friends a few days earlier, unmasked. Later, they too tested positive. My anxiety started kicking in just after two days into isolation. During that time, my days were mostly limited to my room, and if I were to give a name to that phase of my life it would be ‘complete melancholy’. I started building this guilt for having spread the virus to my close ones by not following a simple safety protocol, a simple measure, of wearing a mask. When I went upstairs to sit in the sun, I could see surgical masks hanging on every corner of my house. I felt like I was being followed by masks.
Since then, masks have become integral. Even though they are nothing but a piece of fabric, they helped me contain the spread. This illustration is a tribute to all the masks that I wore and a reminder to those who do not wear masks that it is important and it is simple.
The Record We are an independent digital publication based in Kathmandu, Nepal. Our stories examine politics, the economy, society, and culture. We look into events both current and past, offering depth, analysis, and perspective. Explore our features, explainers, long reads, multimedia stories, and podcasts. There’s something here for everyone.
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