Tipi

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Brendon talks about his series TIPI

I’m fortunate to have been given opportunities in my life where I travel regularly to interesting places, unfamiliar to my circle of friends and family. Unexpected circumstances would see me planted in rural villages in the Far East or an industrial estate in Lithuania, absorbing images, sounds and smells that a photograph could never replicate.

I don’t take many photos when I travel – I’m a terrible photographer and I feel that the snaps I take never transport me back to that moment in time. A picture of the best stir-fry I’ve ever tasted, cooked by the mother of a factory worker in Hai’an, doesn’t begin to tell the story of this woman’s generosity or skill with a knob of ginger.

Realising that I was experiencing something special, I began drawing unique Tipi artworks, inspired by my surroundings in each place. Each image would be an account from my explorations, carefully illustrating my story in tiny triangles. There’s one that I started and finished in Mumbai and when I look back at pictures of it, I’m immediately taken back to the traffic, blistering hot sun and colourful sari’s slipping between stationary cars, child in arms. Another artwork was started in a smoky train station waiting room just outside Shanghai – each Tipi looks like a sharp cigarette, burning through the paper.

No Tipi is the same and no artwork is the same.