Mumbai Diary: Monday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Nama-stay at home
A cop requests a biker to avoid commuting in Dadar over the weekend. Pic/Pradeep Dhivar
A lair for all
Artist Orijit Sen is spending the lockdown at his home in Goa along with his wife and child. But this isn't just any home. It's a 100-year-old typical Portuguese-style building that Sen has converted has converted into a collective studio for artists of all hues.
"I bought the place with a group of friends about 20 years ago, and was able to refurbish and redesign it last year after joining a couple of spaces and opening up some doors and windows," Sen told this diarist. But the community can't use it for creative pursuits right now, of course. So, Sen is the master of his own domain, so to speak.
There seems to be no end to the challenges abounding social media right now. The latest, #MeAt20 challenge, was trending on Twitter for hours. It involves digging out pictures of oneself at the age of 20 and posting the same.
While the Twitterati were busy posting nostalgic pictures of their younger selves with throwback captions, some like Congress's Sanjay Jha took the challenge a notch higher with some humour. His #MeAt20 picture, captioned, "Time flies, as does hair", was of a boyish Tom Cruise, with a middle-parted, back-brushed hairstyle. The picture was a hit, drawing funny comments, including one from Jha himself, where he says "Life is still a cruise."
Dhruvi's reason for art
Ten days before the Janta Curfew, Dhruvi Acharya had been self-isolating in her Breach Candy home since her son had come back from university in the US. She began painting and posted her stunning watercolour work online, thereby garnering interest from people who wished to purchase them.
Now, this work is available for sale on Chemould Prescott Road's website. For several years the artist has been donating annually to about 20 NGOs that help people and animals. The donations from these pieces will go towards Aangan, Karwan-e- Mohabbat and Fisherman of Koliwada. About her work, Acharya told this diarist,"I am not painting with sales on my mind; I am painting to get the worries and fears regarding the pandemic out of my mind."
Let's rap and support
Thane-based youth group Muse Foundation (MF) has kicked off Live Feeds to Feed Lives, an online musical fundraiser to distribute ration to migrant and daily wage labourers. Phase 1 saw Swadesi's Mc Mawali, Sanish Nair from Euphony and Roshni Thakkar perform at the live sessions. And the second phase kicks off today with the rapper Enkore, Pallavi Ishpuniyani and Saraubh Nimbkar.
"We have a fundraiser on Milaap where we're trying to raise three lakhs. So, we decided to tie up with these city-based performers who have a large following. We hope to get more artistes on board representing different genres," Nishant Bangera, founder of MF, told this diarist.
What's up at the Asiatic Society?
Browsing through the page of social media-savvy The Asiatic Society of Mumbai can help you make good use of the free time you have now. They've been taking followers on a virtual walkthrough of the magnificent statues and busts housed inside with interesting nuggets. For instance, the fact that Mary Frere, the daughter of Sir Henry Bartle Edward Frere, governor of Bombay, compiled and created Old Deccan Days (1868), the first English-language field-collected book of Indian folklore.
Freyan Bhathena whose brand Word It Well handles the social media says that the walkthrough has been getting a lot of attention. "Each statue tells a story of the city that blossomed and grew around the epic structure that houses the library and each story is really worth a listen." Visit @asiaticmumbai (on Facebook) or @asiaticsocietymumbai (on Instagram) to join the walkthrough.
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