My father passed away last year. He was a heart patient and I have so many memories, feelings which I am failing to express through tears and sharing my emotions with others. At one point I am facing so much fear, as if I am naked and my mind is filled with so many questions, questions such as why was I not able to spend time with him, how could he go just like this, just vanish, leaving me so alone in this world. If he had fought as a heart patient for so many years, why did he not fight this battle and come home from the hospital.
I have so many unanswered questions to life, to the relationship I shared with my father, how I took him for granted and now when I realize his importance, he is no more. I am filled with regret and pain within and cannot seem to find the answers.
For this Online project, I wish to visit the places which my father connected to, spoke about, was born at, his college, university etc. He attended a university in India when his family migrated from Pakistan during the India Partition of 1947. My father spoke of the love towards his grandmother and them having tea. He mentioned that night before he passed away of how his father passed away in a town where he grew up and the hospital was so nearby and they could not save him.
The universities he studied, being an engineer he worked on certain important projects in India. I would like to visit these sites, to find if his name exists somewhere in records, to visit the places he stayed in, projects he worked upon as a Civil engineer.
My father wanted me to be an engineer and not an artist. During the early years of his marriage he set up a factory manufacturing wires for electronic equipment before deciding to migrate to USA in the year 1986. For a short time he decided to export handicraft items. He travelled in many places in India searching for items he could export such as marble taj mahal, wooden crescent moons which are still found lying in cupboards, storage spaces in our house
For me the line becomes his life, to trace these steps, to find him through this, to help myself heal my disturbed mind.
I wish to go through old photographs, hospital reports, site visit, conversations with his friends who are settle in different parts of the world, my mother’s oral stories.
I have collected the last bank check he was struggling to sign and write and would often blame his poor eye sight, cataract for it but the doctors would put it as a problem of the weak heart. His troubles with memory became a difficult thing for him to cope up, also leading him to sometimes not carrying on with life. My inspiration and a person who provided such strong resistance in times of struggle himself, was struggling to balance the ups and downs of life.
I would like to work on an installation which encompasses my experiences of this journey through a multimedia approach of drawings, photographs and video. I would like to experience the absence of my father to the places he connected with.