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Kumbh Mela

The PopEye – Ethnovisual Association joins young people active in the fields of anthropology, visual arts, economics and law, from European and non-European universities. From this versatile meeting originates a research group which develops ethnographic investigations.The result of the last project carried out by the Association PopEye, “Riverside Rendezvous”, supported by the Association of Friends of the Museum of Art and Science, is the making of a documentary on the Purna Kumbh Mela (literally “feast of the pot complete”), the largest and most important religious events in the world.
In line with the Hindu calendar, this pilgrimage leads millions of people at the confluence of three rivers: the Ganges, the Yamuna and the mythical and invisible river Saraswati.
The festival takes place at intervals of twelve years in four different cities: Allahabad, Haridwar, Ujjain and Nashik, and the choice is influenced by the planetary confluences and cosmological movements. Among all, the most important is Allahabad, where, between 27th January and 25th February 2013, the last Purna Kumbh Mela took place.
Within the cultural religious Hindu landscape, the pilgrimage is considered as a journey of purification that culminates in the cathartic immersion in the waters of the Ganges. This experience is shared by millions of people and it attracts, especially in recent years, an increasing number of Western people who come fascinated by Indian religiousness and by the peculiarity of this event so highly spiritual.
In the documentary this unique festival in the world is told through three different looks, through a plot of three parallel stories: of a western traveler, of a sadhu and of an Indian pilgrim.
The direct story of a lived experience offers a reading beyond the preconceptions, enriched by a creative impetus, conceptual and pragmatic than to any dimension, immense, of the trip.

From 19th September to 2nd October
photographic reportage

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