“Do you sleep in turban? How long is your hair? Do you use conditioner?”
"Sikh Park," an art project inspired by the popular show "South Park," was created by artist Dalbir as a way to bring attention to specific joys and struggles of the Sikh-American experience.
"Most of them come from personal experiences," Dalbir told BuzzFeed in an email. "Some are just insight into Punjabi/Sikh Culture. Originally the focus was mostly issues faced by Sikhs in US (as I had just moved out of US). Immigration, racial profiling at airports, mistaken identity etc. I lived in the US during 9/11 and Sikhs faced the brunt of hate crimes as we were being mistaken for being Arabs/Taliban. The comic was one way to express life as a Sikh in the diaspora."
"While growing up in Calcutta, I had old Bengali aunties very curious about the turban (patka). They would ask questions like: how long is the hair, if I wash them at all, if I sleep with my turban," Dalbir explained. "Abroad the questions were slightly different. If the colour of the turban meant something or If I wore them according to my mood."
In attempting to capture a wide and nuanced range of Sikh experiences, Dalbir regularly varies the topics of his comics. Some focus on topical issues or trending topics – from Honey Singh, to MMS after Narendra Modi's win, to the iPhone launch – while others focus on evergreen Punjabi and Sikh issues.