Safe Travels

Photo: Feng Zhong/Flickr
Hindustan. Mahindra. Premier. These are the colorful machines that keep India moving in the modern age. They're cars and trucks with style, history, and a sense of purpose.

They also need protection, just like their occupants, according to artist Sheela Gowda.

Gowda grew up in city of Bangalaru, Karnataka, India. Located in the south, the capital city is filled with former royal castles, high tech industry, and is known for being rich in iron ore. Its also a place where man clashes with machine. It was this clash that inspired her to create Behold, an installation currently at the Tate Modern in the UK.

Photo: Phil Cornett

Yes, those are chrome automobile bumpers. 
Yes, that's human hair. 

Think of it as an exaggerated good luck charm. 

Here's why... 
Photo: Phil Cornett

The hair on the bumper of the Hindustan Ambassador or Mahindra SUV is there to protect the drivers from anything that may cause them harm. Gowda's exhibit just taught us about superstition and the Indian motorist. I guess you could think of it as a version of the Saint Christopher visor clip in your Grandma's Crown Victoria. In that sense, we're all the same. We just want to be safe out there on the roads.

Be safe, wherever you are, whatever you drive.

Special thanks to fellow artist Phil Cornett for sharing this neat piece of Indian automotive art with us. 



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