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Note from the Artists

Namak Nazar

“Prophets heal the desert with it and those who look back to receive the gaze of the other are turned into pillars of it. It is disobedient.”

Namak Nazar is an aural sculpture that tells the story of an etheric element: ‘So’, a particle of salt that spells the doom of climate change and offers redemption by looking inward. Its palindromic gaze, its evil eye.

Taking the form of a pillar of salt, wedged between the underworld and the realms above, with trumpet speakers that emerge from it like desert blossoms, Namak Nazar reflects on salt lines: markers of a world that is becoming increasingly saline as its waters evaporate.

The poetry combines science and myth to evoke salts’ sensual materiality, and tells its story, as a starter of revolutions to a container for nuclear waste. The soundscape comprises percussion instruments made with salt and songs recorded in the Rann of Kutch, the desert on the border of India and Pakistan. Just as the utility pole is used to communicate messages over long distances, Namak Nazar sends signals that transmit between deserts, pointing at the dying fish at the Salton Sea, and becomes a carrier of prayer, warding off evil, connecting the past to the future, the sea to the desert, the south to the north.

Such poles, harbingers of techno-accelerationism, are erected across our landscapes. Like salt, their doing is their undoing: they preserve, and they corrode. What is the threat, and what sustains us? The outer and the inner blur, the periphery and the center dissolve.

Quiet your mind, let salt wash over you to listen to Namak Nazar, it is listening to you too.