​​I unlearn rapidly what I have seen before;
all I’ve learned of it, is not what I saw.
I unpack my unseeing of the world.
What thereafter happens
is a search for language.
Prisms of Peculiarity
Day Eve Komet
“I believe that we must destroy worlds in order to know what they are made of – healing as creative destruction... The confusion you feel in Prisms of Peculiarity is what it feels like to be in TIME, and I wanted to purposefully create a space that makes you ‘unpack your unseeing of the world’"
visit this planet
Personal Diaries of a Planetary Theatre
Sona Shahani Shukla
“My process of imaging [isn't] just limited to the technical aspect… I [am] able to share my own perspective, emotions and memories when I capture these timeless beings, [and] bring out my eternal love for the planets.”
visit this planet
To Drag A Carcass Through The Night Sky
Norwin Tharayil
“Whilst picturing myself looking into the night sky – at an astral object cloaked in darkness – I was immediately inclined to switch positions; to write from the perspective of not the observing subject but the observed object, the body that all the words and ascriptions fall upon to force it into the light.”
visit this planet
Reflections of Rohini Devasher
(amateur astronomer and curator of The Night Sky Observation)
“There is a strange juxtaposition of the virtual and the real. Hubble and its marvelous images have found their way into everyone’s lives and taken up places in our imaginations. Entities have been assigned form, shape, and so, meaning. But the experience in the field, with a telescope or binoculars is very different. I once asked an amateur astronomer how he deals with the anxieties and false expectations that often accompany a first time observation – that moment of ‘is that all?’ His answer was that, ‘you have to remind them of where they are and of what they are seeing - that the light of that star has traveled that far before pinching the light receptive photons in your eye. As an experience, it is visceral, it is ‘real’ and it is uniquely yours.”
Reflections of Ajay Talwar
(amateur astronomer and curator of The Night Sky Observation)
“A common misunderstanding is that when you observe visually, the experience is limited to yourself, and when you pursue astrophotography, you can share the result with the world.

Astrophotography shows you what you cannot see: colours of nebulae, faint details on planets. But not many people have experienced an observation with a large telescope on a mountain peak. Take a 20-inch telescope to Hatu peak and observe visually – you will forget astrophotography, and remember the sight through the eyepiece forever.”
Reflections of Shveta Sarda
(participant of The Night Sky Observation)
“Some of my favourite moments were when each one of us was looking throughthe telescope and checking what s/he was seeing by describing it in words, andbetween the 20 odd people it was as if we were conjuring that image. It mademe think about what I saw from the telescope. How unspectacular andbewitching it looked. How far away, how in looking at it the universe had to beacknowledged, and its thickness in between. The telescope helped us seesomething so far, but doesn’t bring it close. That night wasn't just an event, buta thought incident.”
Reflections of Sabih Ahmed
(participant of The Night Sky Observation)
“The practice of observation reminds us that seeing is never unmediated. The technologies and techniques through which we see produce a fantasy of unmediated seeing, as if there is a form of experience that is somehow more real, instinctive or natural if those technologies were put aside. The question of whether or not our experience of the world can be unmediated is fundamental to larger questions of what it means to be human. It raises questions about whether human experience can ever be purely biological, when everything we know about the world and the universe is only through techniques of observation. How else would we even know what we are seeing?

The images of ... the stars forming through the telescope that night almost felt delicate. It is hard to imagine that those giant planets would tremble with every little motion of your eye, and flicker almost like low-resolution gifs. After Saros132, I am unable to see gifs the same way again. I am convinced that all the gifs in the world right now are possibly signals from millions of light years away.”
Reflections of Jeebesh Bagchi
(participant of The Night Sky Observation)
“That object ... or what we thought “[it] was, as known through models, photographs, etc., is not the [object] we saw. What happens in a kind of opening in your head – ... what you are seeing with this technology, this telescope, is what Galileo saw, what hundreds and thousands of amateur astronomer have seen, [and] is something that will appear for you if you untrain your mind of the way you have been trained to see [it]. It’s a very circular way. I am going to see [this planet] because I have been mobilised to see [it], because I have seen amazing images of its [features] etc. What we saw, that quiet little object in the sky, the time horizon of it – to even think about 1 billion kilometers is a bit complicated – you have to unlearn rapidly what you have seen before to even make it intelligible. So what happens is there is a search for language; you have to unpack your unseeing of the world, and you have to make intelligible what you saw, which as an experience was very frugal.

It is not a loss for words; it is a search for words. So there is a silencing and a search for words. I think a lot of art appears like that. Art appears in that intersection, when your comfort of having seen the world is withdrawn, and something appears which may not be awe, which may be a bit uncanny, something which is not very sure of its object-ness. And then it reappears! That intersection, that is where we search the [word]. That is where if I have to communicate to you, I can’t take you to see [this planet] but I have to be able to communicate to you the power of [its] presence ... I have to communicate it to my friends, my lover, my students, whomever I meet. To share this experience that is very unique and which is searching for speech. So this gap, this is the gap in which most artistic practice stays.

We have a world of objects which are a threat, which are precious, which are inertial, which can be taken away from you. There are a lot of forces around it. But there is also the world of objects we inhabit – which is generous in a way –which have a life, that have a caring to them.”
The Observatory
Rohini Devasher & Legion Seven
The Observatory: Second Site is the first satellite of an expanding project. The original body of this project was a live, multi-medial lecture performance called The Observatory. In The Observatory, the trajectory of Saturn’s first observations to its contemporary renderings was unpacked to reveal the complexities of observational astronomy, and the ways in which ‘seeing’ is strange, wondrous, and more ambiguous than one might imagine.

The Observatory: Second Site is host to worlds that fracture, expand and evolve this reading, but here in Saturn can be found the original content of The Observatory – transformed in its form and presentation once more.

Designed to chart the night sky, a planisphere is an ancient instrument of observation and navigation. Transposing both the analogue tool and physical live performance, our Planisphere is the means by which we chart and traverse the online incarnation of The Observatory.
visit this planet
close X
Visit The Observatory Second Site
Prisms of Peculiarity : Day Eve Komet