By Monica Luhar, The Aerogram, Aug 11, 2014.
A year ago this month, the Los Angeles community mourned and came together over the passing of 20-year-old Jusdeep Singh Sethi, a multi-talented photographer and creator ofPuzzl3Peace – a spiritual movement and collection of original 35mm film photography.
In honor of his memory, there will be an opening night ceremony for Puzzl3Peace, the first annual photo and art exhibit hosted at the William Grant Still Arts Center in Los Angeles on August 16.
Puzzl3Peace symbolizes Jusdeep’s spiritual connection and love for peace. The exhibit will feature unseen photos from Jusdeep’s travels to Thailand, Peru, India, and other countries across the globe. The collection includes snapshots of historic landmarks, cultural artifacts, and the stories of everyday people that Jusdeep was able to capture through his unique lens and perspective on life.
The exhibit is also a chance to bring the artistic community together from all religious, artistic, and ethnic backgrounds.
Jusdeep initially picked up an interest in photography after taking a few classes in high school. He later dabbled with film after stumbling across his father’s vintage 1980s Canon film camera. Jusdeep was a student at Cal State University Northridge with the hopes of pursuing a career in naturopathy and holistic healing. He was known for his healing smile, and early morning sitar tunes that created a sense of calm everywhere he went.
“Jusdeep himself was kind of a puzzle, and he left a little bit of himself with everyone he interacted with. It’s a legacy he left behind of interactions, and artwork, to bring peace to his loved ones,” Mandeep Sethi, hip-hop artist and brother of Jusdeep, tells The Aerogram.
Mandeep describes his brother as a very spiritual and peaceful person who was always in tune and appreciative of Mother Nature.
Sethi continues: “He was generally really in touch with the universe and the ways of the world. I would definitely say he was a heavily spiritual person, and his photography was an extension of his spirituality.”
The exhibit will feature four different components: A Puzzl3Peace Room, Jusdeep Altar Room, Jusdeep Village Group Exhibition, and the Mother Nature Performance Area which will feature live performances from artists, musicians, and poets. These rooms will provide a creative and healing space for artists and members of the community to come out and experience what it means to achieve peace through different mediums — whether through paintings, digital art, videos, or music.
According to Sethi, Jusdeep’s life mantra was to be peace, and to embody what it means to be peace and love. Before his passing, he left behind puzzle pieces, and quotes that continue to resonate with the spiritual and artistic community:
let the new world breathe a remembrance of our existence, with each breath giving thanks, and exhaling for freedom…for this world…act local, think global. (http://puzzl3peace.tumblr.com/)
The opening night exhibition for Puzzl3Peace will run from 3-8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 16 at the William Grant Still Arts Center: 2520 West View Street, Los Angeles, CA 90016. The exhibit will run for two weeks following the opening night at the gallery, Monday-Friday, 12 p.m.-5 p.m. For more information, check out: http://jusdeep.com/.
Monica Luhar is a digital producer and freelance journalist in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in NBC Asian America, KCET, and KPCC Radio, among various other hyperlocal, weekly, and national news outlets. Follow her on Twitter: @monicaluhar.