Mumbai Diary: Monday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce.
Mask up, sip up
A shop owner in Matunga Labour Camp places a mask on a mannequin as a passerby sips on his morning chai. Pic/Ashish Raje
For a better and inclusive world
Jameela Jamil. Pic courtesy/AFP
As part of the global youth summit One Young World's Instagram live series Together Apart, Devika Malik, disability activist and founder of Wheeling Happiness Foundation, interviewed actor Jameela Jamil. Jamil who also battles a rare connective tissue disorder, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, shared insights on inclusion, body neutrality, disability activism and lots more.
This diarist caught up with Malik who said, "It was an honour to interview Jameela. She highlighted the need for radical inclusion, which can only happen when there is unconditional acceptance and understanding of communities, regarded different. She also spoke of how we need to educate ourselves on issues we are ignorant about, which cause fears and eventually leads us to exclude people. And so, her online community I Weigh promotes radical inclusion of people across races, sizes, disability and the LGBTQI community."
One of the overarching themes that they spoke of was 'progress over perfection.' "Whatever journey we are on — whether it is understanding inclusion, self-love or advocacy, it is important to appreciate the progress we make and not obsessively chase perfection," Malik shared.
Calling out to all closet poets
Delhi Poetry Slam has declared its annual international writing competition open. In its fourth year, the Wingword Poetry Prize which amplifies alternative and unique voices in poetry will distribute a cumulative sum of five lakhs to winners, and will also publish the winning and commended entries in an anthology. Saumya Choudhury, programme manager of the contest, shared, "Our goal is to discover non-native speakers in English and give value to their voices. It is an inclusive competition that surpasses barriers of age, caste, creed etc. to provide a platform for fresh and lively ideas. Despite being one of the largest continents — Asian and African perspectives remain underrepresented. Most of us grew up with literature that was difficult to relate with due to the largely Western narratives. And so we want to highlight the unadulterated imagination and voices of children, youth and adults because that to us, is highly valuable literature."
Gospel music comes home
Joseph Raj Allam and Mark Tribhuvan
The pandemic has pushed several aspects of our lives, including worship, into digital mode. While most devotees are steadily getting accustomed to online services, two city-based singers and worship leaders have an offering for those who have missed going to church or attending live praise and worship events. Artistes Mark Tribhuvan and Joseph Raj Allam will belt out moving gospel music as they take the stage at Soul Strings, an event organised by Bob Naidu that goes live on indie music streaming platform, Skillbox, this month-end. Tribhuvan shared, "We've done live sessions on social media, but this is the first time that gospel artistes are coming together to perform on a platform like Skilbox. We want to help people experience the feeling that they have missed the most, by bringing the experience of church home, and helping them connect with God in these testing times."
We all witnessed the toll that Hyderabad's floods took on its people and property. Now, Mumbai-based youth NGO, Muse Foundation has stepped forward to raise funds for relief. With two collection centres running in Thane, they are looking for spaces to set up more. "The relief workers on ground have shared about the desperate need for dry rations, tarpaulin, sanitary pads, masks and gloves among other essential items," team member Mohit Pal told us. If you'd like to do your bit, call 9987471018.
Art becomes accessible
Black Series by Vimla Ambaliya
In August, Vadodara-based Gallery Ark showcased works of eight recent fine arts graduates in a virtual exhibition, without any commission. Now, in their first physical exhibition, also set up online, the gallery is showcasing the works of four artists from their roster, with most pieces priced under R20,000 to attract new collectors. Titled Hindsight 20/20, the exhibition on view till December 15, features the works of Deepak Agasthya, Mrugen Rathod, Teja Gavankar and Vimal Ambaliya. Gallery director Nupur Dalmia shared that the exhibition has started on an encouraging note: "We had a vision for the first exhibition with the four artists, so we took our time to map this out with great care. I'm happy to share that we've had strong interest and conversions on the sales front."
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