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The Devotee – Commitment and Will. The context of the highlighted artwork is about life beyond the 'normal'. It is but a reflection of my own history - my mother dying early in my childhood. The trauma held me behind for a lot of years to come and yet I tried hard and continued my studies despite my existential crisis at the time. I pushed myself harder for the sake of the dreams my mother had for me and true, at times my ways of thinking were quite at odds with those around me. The conservative social system I grew up in, did not really leave or allow much scope for my free-thinking to flourish. Nonetheless, I was obstinate enough to keep on pursuing my line of thoughts resulting in the adoption of the world of arts. I was an 'anomaly' for the remainder of my family too due to my free will and thinking. Among all the difficult confrontations, I've had to come across, the two systems (family and society) mentioned earlier were for me the most overwhelming to overcome. That is why, I often imagine myself in a life of recluse - beyond all obstacles - busy with only me and my mind with no one to come in between. This is my way to escape reality in the form of imagination. Admitting wholeheartedly, that real life has responsibilities and accountability, I don't intend to physically escape them, rather I have embraced them from my very childhood, and have since adapted myself to thrive on such systematic dilemmas. Nevertheless, a moment of relief through my imaginative process gives me the strength to carry on in the real world. And this imagination of mine reflects immensely on my art forms. The recluse - the hermit - a devotee, who lives a life completely stripped away from everything around him - society, responsibilities, social systems, family, etc. He is there, one with nature - the true mother of our reality as we speak. He is the devotee of knowledge and wisdom beyond the material world. He dives deep into the realm of the unknown through deep meditation (doing 'sadhana') escaping all of the material worlds and their problems. This is but a way of me depicting myself through the avatar of the young devotee who is in 'sadhana'. The trident around the neck I've used to symbolize his determination and spirit for his pursuit. In the oriental regions, there has always been the use of particular herbs to accelerate one's mind towards the deeper focus in 'sadhana'.The leaves of the herbs I've blended in my works to symbolize his oneness to mother nature. The hermit's aim is to unravel the deepest mysteries of the realm we reside in and utilize them for the greater good of humankind. The trident is a show of willpower and determination against all the obstacles that one such as me faces in his life while pursuing his own aspirations. And the solitary, loyal to nature, the devotee himself as I who is silent, mindful yet powerful enough to carry himself towards his own focus.