Jacqueline Fernandez
Jacqueline Fernandez

The face of Joya
"Jacqueline Fernandez is a close friend. She's spirited, fresh, beautiful, attractive, and truly represents a language we endeavour to speak: that of being beyond borders and boundaries. She's the perfect face for Joya and we are delighted to announce our association with her," says Yasmin Ali Morani of Cineyug, who along with Priyanka Soorma Chaturvedi organises one more of the city's monster ladies' shopping extravaganzas, which sees perfectly coiffed and manicured socialites scrambling for ware. To take place over two days in the third week of September at the Dome at the NSCI, the highlight of this year's extravaganza will be a capsule collection of Reshma Merchant's Milk along with those of Monisha Jaisingh, Agrorima and others.

"We present something for everyone. You want to buy a granola bar, you can. You want to buy an outfit for your wedding, you can," says its spokesperson, enigmatically. And of course, what's a monster women's shopping fest without its fair share of insularity and snootiness? As has been the practice, we are informed that there will be an 'exclusive preview for select guests' (read friends of the organisers and those they want to befriend) in the morning on the first day of the exhibition.
That's when the craziness officially begins.

The original outfit by Rohit Bal
The original outfit by Rohit Bal

Grace under pressure
More than the usual storm in a C Cup occurred yesterday, when Delhi-based designer Rohit Bal, one of the fashion world's leading stars took to social media and posted about what appears to be an appalling case of plagiarism. "The original by Rohit Bal on the ramp," he wrote about one of the accompanying pictures, and one could almost hear the ice-cold fury in his voice, as he added, "The fake by some parasitical designer."

The copycat outfit
The copycat outfit

"We are surrounded by wannabes and parasitical, desperate designers, who should really hide their heads in shame and not strip this creative art of all its dignity and respect. Shame on you SM," he said about the offender, who had not only ripped off his design, but, to add insult to injury, had also used the same model to display it on. "Just the height of blatant shamelessness and utter disrespect for this profession. Feeling disgusted and appalled," he fumed, prompting fellow designers Shahab Durazi and JJ Vallaya to weigh in with empathy, advice and support.

Rohit Bal
Rohit Bal

"I think what is needed is the creation of a social media/press campaign on behalf of the FDCI, which takes the issue of plagiarism up on a larger platform," said Vallaya. Interestingly, in the ensuing baying for blood and clamour to name and shame the miscreant, Bal displayed unusual grace under pressure. "Revealing her name would be giving her unnecessary publicity," he said to us when we enquired. "She's just some random lady And I don't want to harm her, per se. I'm compiling a list of many more bigger fish. It's they who should be exposed."

Anand Mahindra
Anand Mahindra

Fists of fury
He's said to be the epitome of a gentleman, inheriting his mantle from none other than his uncle Keshav Mahindra, said to be a doyenne of India Inc. So when the usually unflappable, Harvard-educated Anand Mahindra alluded on Twitter to what appears to be his hell raisin' days, tweeple responded with expected delight. The provocation came in the form of a news clip of a racism incident, which had gone viral, featuring abusive language by a white man against a black man at a Starbucks in Chicago. "It's been a while since I punched anyone in a street fight. But oh how I wish I had been there to take a go at this guy..." wrote the chairman of Mahindra and Mahindra, one of the country's leading industrialists.

"It's been a while??? So thr was a time when you punched someone… Lets hear your side of story" was one response. "Did you really punch anybody ever?" went another; while a third said, "I thought your fights would've been like 'I'll see you in the court buddy.'" But the peerlessly suave Mahindra hadn't obliged his curious fans and spilled the beans on his street fighting days till the time of going to press.

Riya and Ashwin GroverRiya and Ashwin Grover

Two happy years
Time feels like its passing by so swiftly that we realised with a start that it's been two years since the London-based Riya, daughter of our friends Asha and Dipi Khilnani, and her husband Ashwin, son of Pamela and Timmy Grover, were married at what was a glittering celebration in Venice. The wedding attended by stars, socialites and sybarites from across the world, had been highly anticipated, and we had been looking forward to attending the festivities, timed by the art-loving Khilnani to coincide with the Venice Biennale, but, unfortunately, had been unable to at the last minute. Riya had grown up in front of our eyes, since we'd first met her as a schoolgirl at Delhi's British School many moons ago.

Asha and Dipi Khilnani
Asha and Dipi Khilnani

Since then, stints at Oxford and Harvard, and a serious career as an investment banker, had turned her into the swan she is, but mercifully, she hadn't lost any of her youthful charm and warmth. "The best thing to hold onto in life is each other...Happy Anniversary my darlings Riya and Ashwin," commented her proud mum, Asha, about the happy occasion. And what's more, we hear there's more good news on the way!

 Dhruvi AcharyaDhruvi Acharya

The art of the matter
"Summer 2017 is a great time for artists and art lovers, as four major world art events take place in Europe: Documenta 14, which happens every 5 years; Skulptur Projekte Münster, which takes place every 10 years; the Venice Biennale; and Art Basel," says Mumbai-based artist Dhruvi Acharya, who along with Atul Dodiya, Jitish Kallat, Mithu Sen, Rashid Rana, Reena Kallat, Shilpa Gupta and Sonia Khurana is showing currently at Art Basel with Chemould Prescott Road along with Experimenter and Gallery Ske.

Reena Kallat
Reena Kallat

Jitish Kallat
Jitish Kallat

Shilpa GuptaShilpa Gupta

What's more, after the dismal non-show at this year's Venice Biennale, where India is yet to get an official country pavilion, the curated Art Unlimited section of Art Basel includes installations by Subodh Gupta (where this week his performance included him cooking and feeding his audience) and Dayanita Singh.Documenta 14 in Athens features works by Nilima Sheikh, KG Subramanyan, Gauri Gill, Amar Kanwar, Ganesh Haloi and Natasha Ginwala. "Seeing art in Athens and Basel has been a superb experience," says Acharya. "It's also great to see Indian art at international venues, which earlier didn't have as much Indian participation." Indeed.