The Eyes Have It

Venue The Adil Shah Palace

Before the letter became part of an alphabet, it was an image — a symbol of a story, an idea encapsulated within lines and angles.

Strung together, these abstract geometric shapes turned from hieroglyphics to runes to letters of an alphabet. Held together by the magnetic pull of sound, they turned into constellations for the tongue, weapons for the imagination, and tools for the storyteller. They became words while images turned and tangled with technology to create pictures that were shape-shifters themselves. Because often they pretended to tell the truth when actually, they were playing around with it.

And so the real world was transformed, by words and images, in the eye of the beholder.

Tradition suggests there is a contest between words and images. Because ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’. Because ‘words can be like x-rays if you use them properly’.

Yet the truth is, words must be read and images must be beheld, and in the eye, the twain meet. They’re two dialects of one language: the language of the imagination. Two codes, both seeking to understand, interpret and communicate — this is not as much a competition as it is an elaborate performance.

Look. Linger.

Read the story in the photograph. See the picture in the words.

  • Visual Arts