The Balinese tradition of Ogoh Ogoh – NOWNESS

American filmmaker and photographer Travis Barron travelled to Bali for his latest film—an awe-inspiring anthropological portrait of the country’s Nyepi festival, where silence, parade and meditation drive away the evils that plague all living beings. Barron follows a team of Balinese artists as they build an Ogoh-Ogoh statue: a towering, demonic form of bamboo, grass, and papier-mâché. These terrifying constructions become possessed by malign spirits during the course of the festival, which are subsequently purged at the end of the celebration—driving away any odious entities that have accumulated within these surreal sculptures. Barron, whose previous film work has taken him from Tokyo to Bangkok, explains: “The statues range from corrupt princes and demons to Hindu gods, and are designed to be as terrifying as possible. Each Ogoh-Ogoh requires a month of painstaking assembly, before being burned to banish the evil spirits. Until the next year.”

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