Augusto Salinas: The Pitcher Festival
Augusto Salinas comes from Tucuman, Argentina at the foothills of the Andes. He started making photographs with his father's camera at the age of fourteen. A New Yorker since 1990, he is a staff photographer with Davis Studio in Mamaroneck.
In 1998 Salinas made his first fateful trip to India. Thus began a passionate relationship realized through the camera lens. He says:
"I traveled throughout the subcontinent, absorbed and bewildered by the contrast of its radiant soil, picturesque temples, and spirituality of life, with its people's poverty and vulnerability to everyday life tragedies. My photographic quest has taken me to many holy places... but nothing prepared me for what I was to witness and photograph at the greatest of India's mass immersion rituals, the Maha Kumbh Mela of 2001. In just forty-four days fifty million people visited Allahabad, searching for purification!
"Every visit to India imposes a new experience, a new discovery, a new awakening. My ongoing project to photograph the Kumbh Mela Festivals started in 1998 at the Mela in Hardwar, continued in 2001 at Allahabad and in 2004 at Ujjain. In 2007 I will go to Nasik to photograph the fourth and the last of the Kumbh Melas to complete my work on this ancient ceremony: The Pitcher Festival."