Pitkar’s images also work at a deeper philosophical level. The viewer is made aware of the inner meaning of aesthetic representation, of the different ways of inducing the immeasurable. The plays of multiple superimposed levels and of forms and patterns continue like an incantation beyond the photographer’s frame suggesting the infinite.
Mustansir Dalvi’s text complements Pitkar’s photographs by guiding the reader to an understanding of the variety and symbolism of ornamental forms that grace Islamic architecture, especially in the Indian context. Ornament in its many manifestations transforms the architecture, dematerializing immense monuments into elegant jewel-boxes. Dalvi shows how artisan and patron came together in India in a unique integration of two divergent world views and cultures to create a lasting syncretism of Islamic and Hindu traditions that reached its zenith in the architecture of the Mughal period.
From Super Book House, in our Architecture section, in hardcover, 254 pages. Rs 3000.