ஒச்சப்பன் இந்த ஆண்டில் ‘அந்திமழை’ என்ற நூலுக்குக் கொடுத்த ஒரு செவ்வி. ஆங்கிலத்தில் அதை ஒச்சப்பனே தருகிறார்.
Camera Eye &
The Madurai Lover
Interview for the Andhi Mazhai Magazine by Perassi Kannan
The Belgian man, Henk, is quite familiar with Madurai taking pictures in and around the town for the past 25 years, discovering lately more the life in villages and small towns around the big city. In his own accented Tamil, picked up from his continuous visit from 1987, talking to local Tamil people, he replied:
“Why did you select Madurai at all?”
“Madurai, I consider the center point of TN. I can reach any place in TN from here. Moreover I find that the essence of Tamil culture is very much alive in Madurai. Festivals like Chitra, Karthigai, Pongal … feels more vibrant celebrated here. The hospitality, the joy, the love and smile from their heart are livelier in Madurai than anywhere else.
“My mother was attracted by the photos that I took in Madurai. She was then 72. Still she wanted to visit India. She did it for 10 years. Now I am coming alone … she passed away immediately after her last visit to TN. I am in my sixties. I worked for the Government of Justice as a high ranking officer. Presently I am retired. Photography is my hobby, a way to meet people, sharing the pleasure. In ’94 I discovered the real Jallikattu, nowadays losing its glamour.
“When I first came to Madurai I met Ochappan, a load man, still a good friend using his derived name ‘oochappan’ on the internet. Anand is nowadays my right hand, helping, getting a day older.
Henk hibernates in Madurai from November till February. He likes so much our language as carrier of our culture and lives, hoping that Tamil doesn't lose its importance to English, a foreign language. His photographs are so brightly colored since he feels that colors reflect the happiness in the minds and lives of the Tamil people.
His dream is to exhibit once his Madurai photos on the pavement in the city, so that everyone will have the chance to see and enjoy them.
His photos can be seen in : http://www.flickr.com/photos/oochappan/