Quandra Loka is a visual meditation on a very simple circumstance: a woman
in and near a pool of water. Narcissus, the archetype of ego, gazes at his own
reflection in a pond, never able to contact the "object" of his self-enamored
affection. But Quandra, the true beloved, is one with the water itself, whether
in or out of the pool.
I shot the majority of the images in Quandra Loka
underwater, or with the camera lens partially submerged in water, so that the
water functions as a vast and subtly complex lens, achieving visual results not
possible by any technical means. The images are made by a "technique" that requires
continuous participation in the living instant of the photographic situation —
sensitive to the constantly changing sunlight conditions, the ever-shifting minute
movements of the subject, and even my own ability to stay submerged underwater.
This "method" is beyond conceptual effort, beyond conventions of control in the
ordinary sense, beyond point of view. This process of generating images — involving
absolute awareness of every detail of what is occurring and (simultaneously) an
intuitive trust in allowing the ultimately unpredictable process to take place
— is a means of allowing reality to be self-manifested.
I intend these
images to "picture" the unity of the undifferentiated reality from which all appearances
emerge in a constant flow of changes. The entire span of human possibilities is
reflected in these images — both "positive" and "negative." But all possibilities
are seen in the context of that inherent unity or indivisible space. The positives
and the negatives are all transcended, rather than any attempt being made to render
them acceptable in and of themselves.
Avatar Adi Da Samraj