2nd Place for Duke's Mahato Image Awards — in Memoriam of Abhijit Mahato

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Though I never knew Abhijit, I had the honor of attending an annual event in memoriam of him this evening, where I learned about his life, work, and relationship with science and the arts. As a memorial to his passions for science and the arts, an annual image contest is held to display extraordinary and diverse talents.

I submitted one of my top works "Sunkissed Bryophytes" {right}, and received 2nd place out of ~60 submissions to the competition in his honor titled "Envisioning the Invisible".

Images from the Event

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Exerpt from program:

Abhijit Mahato, originally from Tatanagar, India, was known to his friends and lab mates for his broad range of interests that often bridged the gap between engineering and art. He had a particular passion for literature, sports, and photography. His adviser and friend, Professor Tod Laursen, characterized Abhijit as an intellectually curious and exceptionally kind, outgoing man: "He made friends very easily and always had a smile on his face. Our research team was particularly close to Abhijit – he was such a pleasure to be around. He always went out of his way to engage with people and would stop whatever he was doing and help anyone who asked. I was particularly struck by how very well read in both poetry and literature Abhijit was, and how much he enjoyed conversation with others about what they were reading."

Abhijit Mahato was killed on Friday, January 18, 2008 at the age of 29 — the victim of a senseless, violent crime. His friends, lab mates, faculty, and admirers at Duke University will always remember him.