My works are experiments on paper. They are experiments on systems of working in which I choose some rules and restrictions and vary them subtly between each work. A lot is also left open to chance which ends up playing a big role in the resulting composition of the works. These systems of rules that define the working process are all centered around two things: first on the act of observing the fibre texture of a paper surface and second on the act of tracing what one sees.

I use seriality and repetition as a way of forming a kind of narrative about my work. I have been doing public reading of the scores written for each of these works as an essential part of the work itself. They are written in the form of instructional guidelines interwoven with personal anecdotes which one can possibly use to create similar works if interested.

In these ongoing experiments, every traced line remains as a moment of thinking and a moment of space as well - whether it is the immediate physical space of and on the paper itself or whether it is the space of the surrounding environment in which the paper exists; and every untraced line (signified by an empty space or some other form of mark making) remains equally as a moment of thinking and a moment of space as well, especially the social space and social interactions that take place around it. And sometimes these traced lines become a source for yet another work within the same work.

For example, Untitled 3 from Tracing Paper Series is drawn with a 0.8mm black inkpen. The rule here was to trace the paper texture by following the subtle shadows of the fibre texture that one can see on the paper surface. If there is a break of any sort, before continuing with a new session, I would leave a little patch of white space as a symbolic gesture of the pause in the workflow. The breaks could be coffee breaks, cigarette breaks, conversation breaks, beer breaks and any other kinds that are imposed on me by my social interactions. Or they could also be self-imposed breaks because I want to stop doing this activity of repeatedly tracing the paper texture because it is super boring. Or it could be much needed breaks like toilet breaks, or breaks for the eyes. At this point, I was worried that I might be going cockeyed from staring too closely at the paper texture. Which always made me think of this girl from high school. Although not bad at all, I would prefer not to have it because she had to do some eye training therapy for a few years and it took her quite a bit of effort to fix it. But I guess for her it mattered because now she is a super famous actress in Nepal.

Another work Untitled 4 from Tracing Paper Series is drawn with a 0.4mm black inkpen. The rule here was to alternate between left and right hands after every break. I was starting to have some wrist problems around this time because when I was a kid I had a small biking accident while learning how to stop the bike. For some reason, it was quite difficult to release the clutch smoothly at the same time you press down on the break smoothly, and the bike jerked to a stop and I fell and sprained my right wrist and that starts to act up sometimes even now. My work in the restaurant wasn't helping either. Also, whenever I went out with Tobi and his friends at night and they wanted to play fuss ball, I couldn't join in because moving my wrists was painful. So this rule of giving my right hand an occasional break was quite useful at the time.

After a while I started noticing that although my hands are continuously tracing the paper texture, my mind could be distracted and thinking about this and that and not necessarily about the paper. So, I started getting interested in how our brains are structured and found out about the Default Mode Network in the brain which is the state that activates in the brain when you're not focused on your task at hand and you're daydreaming or mind-wandering, thinking about yourself and others, your past and future. It's the network that activates by default in your brain when you're inattentive to the outside world and hence its name. So, I wanted to incorporate these mental distractions into the work as well and started the next Tracing and Distraction Series.

For example, in Untitled 2 of Tracing and Distraction Series, the rule was to trace the paper with a 0.2mm black inkpen. I chose 0.2mm because by this time it had become my favorite. After having experimented with 0.05, 0.1, 0.2, 0.4, 0.8 and 1.5mm ink pens I realized that 0.2mm was neither too thick nor too thin – it felt just right. In any case, the rule here was that as soon as I realize that I'm distracted and thinking about anything else other than the paper like my crush on a younger boy and how embarrassing it was when one time in a moment of drunkenness I told him about my crush and his immediate response was of total innocent bewilderment and he says, “How is that possible? You are so much older than me?” I can't quite remember the exact words because I was quite drunk then and I wasn't too embarrassed then either because I was quite drunk then. But thinking about it now or whenever in my default mode, I am definitely embarrassed. Anyway, as soon as I realized that I am not focused on my task of tracing the paper texture, I would stop tracing, close my eyes and draw a straight vertical line all the way down to the edge of the paper. Then I would again start tracing until the next distraction and continue the process. It was a similar working process in Untitled 1 from Tracing and Distraction Series where instead of a vertical line and instead of 0.2mm black inkpen, I would scribble with a 1.5mm metallic inkpen with my eyes closed. Later, I also created an under layer with invisible UV ink and fluorescent yellow maker with my own rules and systems applied to the pattern that came out of my distractions but it will be too long to go into its details now.

Besides mental distractions, there were also a lot of social distractions, especially when you are in a school setting and sharing atelier with friends. We would be working all day so at night, someone would say- let's grab some beer. Or it's 5o'clock and nice and sunny and a perfect weather for beer drinking. Or maybe there was an event last night and there are still some leftover beers and someone would suggest that we finish it. I realized that I was spending a lot of time drinking beer with friends in school. So I wanted to utilize this setting somehow and started working on my Drunk Series. Here the rule was to work on this series after I've had a few drinks or many, depending on the situation. And amidst all the fun drunk conversations if I could still find the motivation to come back to my atelier and sit alone and start tracing the paper texture, I would do it. As is evident from the result, I couldn't motivate myself too much because it's quite difficult to come back to this boring activity. Especially in a drunken or tipsy state, you can easily start questioning the reasons for doing what you're doing everyday for the past few years.

Very recently, I started working on Tracing Scrolling Paper Series which is a work of 1.5m high and 10m long done with 0.3 and 0.5mm black inkpens, fine tipped fluorescent coral red marker and a yellow brush marker. Here I followed two main systems and many subsystems. I chose to work with 0.3 and 0.5 through a process of elimination. After having worked with 0.05, 0.1, 0.2, 0.4, 0.8, and 1.5mm, it was natural to choose the two that were missing, which were 0.3 and 0.5. I also chose the color black as I have mostly always done before but in fact, yellow is my favorite color. When I was young, I was in a yellow team for 10 years in school competing against red, blue and green teams. I even became a vice captain of the yellow team during my second last year of school and then became a captain of the yellow team during my final year of school. But still I chose black because I wanted to have the chance to use yellow later on in the work.

The rules are quite simple but would be too long to explain here in detail but nevertheless in short - I would trace with 0.3mm black inkpen, and as soon as there is a mental distraction I would stop, close my eyes and draw a straight horizontal line till the pen hits the right end of the roll (I had to create rolls on two sides of my wall since I didn't have a 10m long atelier space. This made it easier to move the paper left and right within a space of 1.62m). Then I would roll a dice and if I get 1, I would turn the left roll once, if I get 2 then turn it twice and if I get 3 turn it three times, but if I get 4 then I would turn the right roll once and with 5, twice and with 6, thrice. Then I would draw a circle of 1, 2 or 3 cm diameter around the end point of the line (which is also the starting point of the new session) to signify how many turns were made to get to the new frame, and then continue the new session until at some point after many left and right turns I would hit the very right edge of the paper. Finally it was time to change the system to the 0.5mm black inkpen but before that I needed to roll the paper all the way to left edge with a yellow brush marker, which as mentioned before is my favorite color. Then a similar but slightly different rule was applied to 0.5mm tracings where I could trace as much as possible without minding my mental distractions. Only thing to be attentive of was of breaks that lasted for more than 30 minutes which meant that I had to move my position and start a new session after that break that lasted for more than 30 minutes by rolling a dice and turning the rolls as determined by the number on the dice.

30 minute breaks are actually not that long. They go by really fast when you're talking about relationship issues with Jeremy or listening to relationship stories from Romain, or sometimes even talking about quite serious relationship problems of Elza. They go by faster and happen more and more often when you mix them up by talking about Trump, weird current world affairs, things stupid people do sometimes, TV shows or by doing I-Ching predictions - kind of like fortune telling based on an ancient Chinese book called the Book of Changes – with whoever is willing to try out this pseudo-science of meaningful coincidences that guide and predict your future events.

At some point I had to add another rule because I noticed that time is limited in a day and I was spending a lot of time socializing and talking to people and not always tracing. After some calculation, I realized that it takes me roughly 1 minute to trace a space of 3.7sq cm. So, accordingly I could calculate how much space I spent not tracing in the break time and then create an equivalent grid of that space in the drawing. I choose to divide the grid into square grids. So I needed to find the square root of the total amount of space I spent not tracing, and then continue finding the square root of the remaining space as far down as is possible. The important point here was that I needed to mark the time spent not tracing only when I really had a strong desire to spend that time tracing. For example, if someone walks in with a beer, and I'm in the middle of tracing and I want to kind of still continue tracing, but I also want to join in with the beer, then I can stop tracing, put a timer on and record how much time I will spend drinking and not tracing. But on the other hand, if I want to drink beer and I go to Coop to buy beer and I invite others to join me, then I cannot add this time into the time spent not tracing because I didn't want to spend that time tracing the paper anyway. After about 2 months plus minus 7 days, this work was supposed to be finally done. Mine was plus 7 because right around then we all had to move out of our atelier. And that is an abridged version of my 10m long story but in actuality, when I did a public reading of its scores, it was about 20 minutes long.

My works are experiments on paper. They are experiments on systems of working in which I choose some rules and restrictions and vary them subtly between each work. A lot is also left open to chance which ends up playing a big role in the resulting composition of the works. These systems of rules that define the working process are all centered around two things: first on the act of observing the fibre texture of a paper surface and second on the act of tracing what one sees.

I use seriality and repetition as a way of forming a kind of narrative about my work. I have been doing public reading of the scores written for each of these works as an essential part of the work itself. They are written in the form of instructional guidelines interwoven with personal anecdotes which one can possibly use to create similar works if interested.

In these ongoing experiments, every traced line remains as a moment of thinking and a moment of space as well - whether it is the immediate physical space of and on the paper itself or whether it is the space of the surrounding environment in which the paper exists; and every untraced line (signified by an empty space or some other form of mark making) remains equally as a moment of thinking and a moment of space as well, especially the social space and social interactions that take place around it. And sometimes these traced lines become a source for yet another work within the same work.

For example, Untitled 3 from Tracing Paper Series is drawn with a 0.8mm black inkpen. The rule here was to trace the paper texture by following the subtle shadows of the fibre texture that one can see on the paper surface. If there is a break of any sort, before continuing with a new session, I would leave a little patch of white space as a symbolic gesture of the pause in the workflow. The breaks could be coffee breaks, cigarette breaks, conversation breaks, beer breaks and any other kinds that are imposed on me by my social interactions. Or they could also be self-imposed breaks because I want to stop doing this activity of repeatedly tracing the paper texture because it is super boring. Or it could be much needed breaks like toilet breaks, or breaks for the eyes. At this point, I was worried that I might be going cockeyed from staring too closely at the paper texture. Which always made me think of this girl from high school. Although not bad at all, I would prefer not to have it because she had to do some eye training therapy for a few years and it took her quite a bit of effort to fix it. But I guess for her it mattered because now she is a super famous actress in Nepal.

Another work Untitled 4 from Tracing Paper Series is drawn with a 0.4mm black inkpen. The rule here was to alternate between left and right hands after every break. I was starting to have some wrist problems around this time because when I was a kid I had a small biking accident while learning how to stop the bike. For some reason, it was quite difficult to release the clutch smoothly at the same time you press down on the break smoothly, and the bike jerked to a stop and I fell and sprained my right wrist and that starts to act up sometimes even now. My work in the restaurant wasn't helping either. Also, whenever I went out with Tobi and his friends at night and they wanted to play fuss ball, I couldn't join in because moving my wrists was painful. So this rule of giving my right hand an occasional break was quite useful at the time.

After a while I started noticing that although my hands are continuously tracing the paper texture, my mind could be distracted and thinking about this and that and not necessarily about the paper. So, I started getting interested in how our brains are structured and found out about the Default Mode Network in the brain which is the state that activates in the brain when you're not focused on your task at hand and you're daydreaming or mind-wandering, thinking about yourself and others, your past and future. It's the network that activates by default in your brain when you're inattentive to the outside world and hence its name. So, I wanted to incorporate these mental distractions into the work as well and started the next Tracing and Distraction Series.

For example, in Untitled 2 of Tracing and Distraction Series, the rule was to trace the paper with a 0.2mm black inkpen. I chose 0.2mm because by this time it had become my favorite. After having experimented with 0.05, 0.1, 0.2, 0.4, 0.8 and 1.5mm ink pens I realized that 0.2mm was neither too thick nor too thin – it felt just right. In any case, the rule here was that as soon as I realize that I'm distracted and thinking about anything else other than the paper like my crush on a younger boy and how embarrassing it was when one time in a moment of drunkenness I told him about my crush and his immediate response was of total innocent bewilderment and he says, “How is that possible? You are so much older than me?” I can't quite remember the exact words because I was quite drunk then and I wasn't too embarrassed then either because I was quite drunk then. But thinking about it now or whenever in my default mode, I am definitely embarrassed. Anyway, as soon as I realized that I am not focused on my task of tracing the paper texture, I would stop tracing, close my eyes and draw a straight vertical line all the way down to the edge of the paper. Then I would again start tracing until the next distraction and continue the process. It was a similar working process in Untitled 1 from Tracing and Distraction Series where instead of a vertical line and instead of 0.2mm black inkpen, I would scribble with a 1.5mm metallic inkpen with my eyes closed. Later, I also created an under layer with invisible UV ink and fluorescent yellow maker with my own rules and systems applied to the pattern that came out of my distractions but it will be too long to go into its details now.

Besides mental distractions, there were also a lot of social distractions, especially when you are in a school setting and sharing atelier with friends. We would be working all day so at night, someone would say- let's grab some beer. Or it's 5o'clock and nice and sunny and a perfect weather for beer drinking. Or maybe there was an event last night and there are still some leftover beers and someone would suggest that we finish it. I realized that I was spending a lot of time drinking beer with friends in school. So I wanted to utilize this setting somehow and started working on my Drunk Series. Here the rule was to work on this series after I've had a few drinks or many, depending on the situation. And amidst all the fun drunk conversations if I could still find the motivation to come back to my atelier and sit alone and start tracing the paper texture, I would do it. As is evident from the result, I couldn't motivate myself too much because it's quite difficult to come back to this boring activity. Especially in a drunken or tipsy state, you can easily start questioning the reasons for doing what you're doing everyday for the past few years.

Very recently, I started working on Tracing Scrolling Paper Series which is a work of 1.5m high and 10m long done with 0.3 and 0.5mm black inkpens, fine tipped fluorescent coral red marker and a yellow brush marker. Here I followed two main systems and many subsystems. I chose to work with 0.3 and 0.5 through a process of elimination. After having worked with 0.05, 0.1, 0.2, 0.4, 0.8, and 1.5mm, it was natural to choose the two that were missing, which were 0.3 and 0.5. I also chose the color black as I have mostly always done before but in fact, yellow is my favorite color. When I was young, I was in a yellow team for 10 years in school competing against red, blue and green teams. I even became a vice captain of the yellow team during my second last year of school and then became a captain of the yellow team during my final year of school. But still I chose black because I wanted to have the chance to use yellow later on in the work.

The rules are quite simple but would be too long to explain here in detail but nevertheless in short - I would trace with 0.3mm black inkpen, and as soon as there is a mental distraction I would stop, close my eyes and draw a straight horizontal line till the pen hits the right end of the roll (I had to create rolls on two sides of my wall since I didn't have a 10m long atelier space. This made it easier to move the paper left and right within a space of 1.62m). Then I would roll a dice and if I get 1, I would turn the left roll once, if I get 2 then turn it twice and if I get 3 turn it three times, but if I get 4 then I would turn the right roll once and with 5, twice and with 6, thrice. Then I would draw a circle of 1, 2 or 3 cm diameter around the end point of the line (which is also the starting point of the new session) to signify how many turns were made to get to the new frame, and then continue the new session until at some point after many left and right turns I would hit the very right edge of the paper. Finally it was time to change the system to the 0.5mm black inkpen but before that I needed to roll the paper all the way to left edge with a yellow brush marker, which as mentioned before is my favorite color. Then a similar but slightly different rule was applied to 0.5mm tracings where I could trace as much as possible without minding my mental distractions. Only thing to be attentive of was of breaks that lasted for more than 30 minutes which meant that I had to move my position and start a new session after that break that lasted for more than 30 minutes by rolling a dice and turning the rolls as determined by the number on the dice.

30 minute breaks are actually not that long. They go by really fast when you're talking about relationship issues with Jeremy or listening to relationship stories from Romain, or sometimes even talking about quite serious relationship problems of Elza. They go by faster and happen more and more often when you mix them up by talking about Trump, weird current world affairs, things stupid people do sometimes, TV shows or by doing I-Ching predictions - kind of like fortune telling based on an ancient Chinese book called the Book of Changes – with whoever is willing to try out this pseudo-science of meaningful coincidences that guide and predict your future events.

At some point I had to add another rule because I noticed that time is limited in a day and I was spending a lot of time socializing and talking to people and not always tracing. After some calculation, I realized that it takes me roughly 1 minute to trace a space of 3.7sq cm. So, accordingly I could calculate how much space I spent not tracing in the break time and then create an equivalent grid of that space in the drawing. I choose to divide the grid into square grids. So I needed to find the square root of the total amount of space I spent not tracing, and then continue finding the square root of the remaining space as far down as is possible. The important point here was that I needed to mark the time spent not tracing only when I really had a strong desire to spend that time tracing. For example, if someone walks in with a beer, and I'm in the middle of tracing and I want to kind of still continue tracing, but I also want to join in with the beer, then I can stop tracing, put a timer on and record how much time I will spend drinking and not tracing. But on the other hand, if I want to drink beer and I go to Coop to buy beer and I invite others to join me, then I cannot add this time into the time spent not tracing because I didn't want to spend that time tracing the paper anyway. After about 2 months plus minus 7 days, this work was supposed to be finally done. Mine was plus 7 because right around then we all had to move out of our atelier. And that is an abridged version of my 10m long story but in actuality, when I did a public reading of its scores, it was about 20 minutes long.