Joya: AiR / Rithika Pandey / India


“As a painter, I’ve been on a constant pursuit for newer languages of expression to embed into my work. I wanted to find a way to dig deeper inside of me and come out with something richer and more emotive.

At Joya: AiR, the solitude truly helped me develop my work, which was mixed with enlightening conversations at the dinner table. The vastness all around Los Gázquez (Joya: AiR) is awe inspiring and made contemplate over the smallness of our presence in front of something that is much bigger and profound than us.

I was interested in exploring the formless nature of thought and how it can metamorphosize itself into representative or nonrepresentative visual forms on paper. With a bunch of old photographs collected from a flea market, I was exploring the idea of a shared history where I wanted to incorporate a new symbolic language to depict an abstracted lyrical narrative between something that has been absolute (the photograph) and what is more conceptual than true (the drawing). Kind of like music.

Walking along the Barrancos, I took inspiration from the natural objects and the manners of their arrangement in space and their forms, as means of symbolic representations, which I later interpreted them in several ink drawings.

I feel extremely lucky to have found myself in a space like Joya: AiR and conceptualized so many ideas that I can work on for my future projects. Simon and Donna have really made this paradise happen with such mesmerising grace.

I love them immensely for being so kind and making me feel at home with magical stories from their adventures in India, the funny Bollywood music from Simon’s playlist and Donna’s absolutely gorgeous food”.

- Rithika Pandey