Notes from the Underground: Inside the Strange World of Russian Hermits —> voc.tv/1cVi05Z
It wasn’t exactly a trip to Walden Pond, but three years ago, photographer Danila Tkachenko left the modern world to explore the hinterlands in Russia and Ukraine. His goal: to document the solitary lives of people who have left society behind. His work resulted in a moving collection of portraits, which earned him first prize in the prestigious 2014 World Press Photo contest. I spoke with Tkachenko about what drives people to leave the world and his own quest for solitude.
“Hermits once enjoyed a hundred years of fashion in the garden, drawing to a close in the 1830s. The dramatist Tom Stoppard then brought them back into the limelight of London’s West End. In 1993 his admired play, Arcadia, included the proposal that a hermitage should be built in the gardens of fictional Sidley Hall in Derbyshire. The landscape designer, Mr Noakes, suggests that a candidate could be found by advertising in the newspaper. “But surely,” his patroness Lady Croom replies, “a hermit who takes a newspaper is not a hermit in whom one can have complete confidence.””— @ FT.com (via shimmer)
Group of Inebriated Ascetics, c. 1800
India: Rajasthan, Kishangarh Workshop, 1775-1825
Opaque watercolor and gold on paper
image: 7-5/8 x 6-5/8 in. (19.4 x 16.8 cm); sheet: 8-3/4 x 7-5/8 in. (22.2 x 19.4 cm)
Genre scenes, such as this group of inebriated male ascetics smoking hookah pipes, were popular subjects in Indian painting. Hindu holy men, or sadhus, were also known to imbibe an intoxicating drink made from a marijuana derivative, perhaps referenced here by the scattered cups and jugs. The turbans of the ascetics have loosened and begun to unravel, and most of the men appear to be asleep.
Norton Simon Museum
Reginald Arthur Renaud Bennett, How to Make Electrical Machines (1900)
Avery D. Harrington, Electricity in common words (1884)