From the extensive six-page article on Manjari Sharma’s series “Darshan” in Yoke Magazine:
Hindu deities have been depicted endlessly through painting and sculpture. Therefore it’s surprisingly sweet to see Mumbai-born, Brooklyn-based artist Manjari Sharma bringing to life these gods and goddesses through the production of photographic film, each perfected within the camera.
To make these 6ft images from scratch required exhaustive research, gathering a team of more than 30 Indian craftsmen, including set and prop makers, prosthetics, make-up and costume designers, carpenters, art directors and jewelry makers. Rivaling a Bollywood film in complexity and budget, each elaborate installation reproduces the experience of a Hindu temple, to accurately recreate classical images pivotal to Hindu mythology.
Darshan, a Sanskrit word meaning “vision” or “view”, is most commonly used in the context of Hindu worship. It can also be translated as “an apparition or a glimpse”. One may seek and receive the Darshan of a deity and, upon sight, that may invoke an immediate connection between that deity and the devotee. A Darshan can be described as an experience purposed on helping to focus and call out to your sense of spirituality.