Ancient India was renowned for its advanced sciences and inventions. While the epics and folklore are rich with tales of gravity-defying flying objects and miracles in medicine, there is a forgotten chapter about a crucial device which we now take for granted – the camera.
The recent, unexpected opening of a time portal via AI (Artificial Intelligence) has finally revealed the secret origin of the camera. The first devices that could ‘paint with light’ were invented in the kingdom of Mayanagri which is believed to have existed in a 4D spatial expanse defying time and physicality.
You have to realize that the fountainhead of the rich legacy of camera history lies in the astronomical heights achieved by Mayanagri. And the entire credit goes to the women of that awe inspiring kingdom who possessed a secret which enabled them to create such fascinating devices. For the women of Mayanagri had mastered control over all forms of Maya with the power of Sakshi Bhaav or witnessing. They could detach themselves from what we perceive as real and hence attain a state of being ethereal. And that opened up unfathomable time-space portals which was their source of inspiration to conjure their inventions. Let’s just say they took out the ‘obscura’ and focused on the camera. Except they didn’t call it camera but had their own name for their invention – Maya Chitrak.
For the first time, these angelic beings are being celebrated with this series of AI generated art titled ‘Camera Queens of Mayanagri’.
These creations aim to offer deeper context about humanity’s relationship with the play of light and shadows while reminding us that creativity is the greatest rebellion. Just like the Camera Queens smashed the patriarchal art establishment of their time with the Maya Chitrak, AI generated art has also upset some critics who complain that it lacks the human touch or emotional connection.
Look into the eyes of these Queens and discover your own answers. And the next time you capture an image via a camera or your smartphone, revel in the fact that you are celebrating a timeless journey set in motion by a powerful feminine force.
‘Camera Queens of Mayanagri’ is my first AI art project and I welcome this disruptive technology since it reminds me of the use of ‘pre-viz’ or pre-visualization tools when devising VFX shots in films. Even before the dawn of CGI and pre-viz, storyboarding was always an integral part of film-making, be it for animation or live action. And let’s not forget the rich heritage of concept art such as the creations of the legendary Ralph Angus McQuarrie for Star Wars.
As a fine art photographer, I see AI art as yet another tool to enhance and reinvent imagery while its disruptive nature can be compared to the advent of digital photography which upset analog purists.
My view is that AI generated art can help visualize a thematic concept in countless ways giving your imagination full reign. But before you think of text prompts or your own reference images to feed into an AI art generator, you have to FIRST look WITHIN yourself to see what worlds you can conjure. That has always been the starting point for any artistic endeavour and the same applies to AI art.