Special thanks to:

Dan and Mary Logan

Degen Sayer

Unless noted, all images ©Madhur Dhingra

Eleven

This is Dek Unu Magazine.  In Esperanto, dek unu means "eleven."   Eleven images from a single artist. Eleven artists in eleven solo issues each year.

Dek Unu publishes the work of a new artist-photographer in each issue. The artist's work and words are featured alone and in individual focus as the sole purpose for each issue of the magazine.  Unlike other arts and letters magazines which might look for work from a variety of artists to support an editorial staff's theme, at Dek Unu, theme and imagery are always each artist's own.

Trekking through Ladakh, in the Trans-Himalaya, a region that borders India, Tibet, Xinjiang, and northern Pakistan, Madhur Dhingra visited Buddhist monasteries in some of the most remote and beautiful locations imaginable.  A life-long reader of Buddhist philosophy, he visited these places both as a student and as an artist, absorbing both the scenery and the sacred science.  But, most importantly, Dhingra is a student of people, a street photographer who brings a new aesthetic to his candid images.  It is said among photographers that they do not “take” pictures, they “make” them.  Put another way, this series illustrates perfectly the photo-artist's maxim that, “We  don’t photograph things as they are but, rather, as we are.”

Whether a visitor is practicing, lapsed, or opposed, historically sacred places in each culture often provoke a definite emotional response, a feel.   Sacred places, regardless of sect or faith tradition, seem to each evoke a particular emotional response.  Whether entry is through the carved porticoes and heavy oak doors of a European cathedral, the torii of a Shinto temple, or, for some, through an opening in the trees to a personal outdoor shrine, there’s a difference between the atmosphere within and without.  Madhur Dhingra’s images can be seen as an attempt to describe something of that feeling.

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