Mumbai Diary: Saturday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Photo bombing daddy
Tabu and Rakul Preet Singh's photo session with the media at a Juhu hotel is interrupted when a man with a toddler walked into the frame. Pic/Sameer Markande
A surprise visitor
At the ongoing Frieze Art Fair in New York City, a booth set up by Mumbai-based art gallery Project88 had a special visitor. It was none other than award-winning poet, playwright and essayist Claudia Rankine who took some moments to soak in artist Sandeep Mukherjee's work, while engaging in art talk with gallery director Sree Banerjee Goswami. Other artists showcasing their works at the venue include Amitesh Shrivastava, Anupam Roy, Neha Choksi, Rohini Devasher, Raqs Media Collective, and The Otolith Group.
A super ride
Boman Irani is known to frequently share nuggets of everyday life on Instagram (IG) — his own name intertwined with the cultural fabric of Mumbai. This week, the actor took to IG to share a video of a jolly good rickshaw ride. Irani had spotted a female driver riding with a few passengers in the night. As soon as they saw the actor, they requested him to join them on their ride, to which the actor immediately agreed and even sat on the front seat with the woman. And he summed up the experience in the caption. He wrote, "Met this amazing Super Lady Laxmi, acts in Marathi serials and is also a rickshaw driver. Such an inspiration. A real life hero. Hope you also get a chance to ride in her rickshaw. She is really a bundle of energy. So very proud of you Laxmi and wish you the very best always [sic]." We sure are looking out for Laxmi on our next auto ride.
Kaumudi Iyer (centre) with her family
From Mumbai to Wisconsin
From Nimrata Nikki Haley, who has served as United States Ambassador to the United Nations to senator Kamala Harris, there are several individuals of Indian origin in the higher echelons of the political scenario in the US. Joining them is Kaumudi Iyer, who was recently elected as Alderperson (member of a city council) to the Onalaska, Wisconsin, United States Common Council. A graduate of Mumbai University with Bachelor's degrees in commerce and economics and general law, Iyer moved to the US with her husband. Her campaign's focus was on city planning, safety, and development to manage the city's recent population growth. Our congratulations.
Can't beat this!
Tabla player Aditya Kalyanpur did something yesterday that most musicians would give an arm and a leg for. He shared the stage with jazz legend Herbie Hancock at a concert in Melbourne. Hancock has played the piano in stellar acts like Miles Davis Quartet and is one of those rare jazz musicians who has won a Grammy Award for Album of the Year. Kalyanpur was understandably ecstatic about the opportunity, saying it's a "precious gift and humble attempt to expand the tabla universe".
Coming soon in Byculla
If you're an art lover and live around Byculla, then keep an eye out for the 15x75 ft mural coming outside Piramal Aranya. A part of a much larger project, supported by the real estate group, this project is an extension of their art residency, where they got artists to submit ideas for a mural themed around Byculla. "The mural is meant to be a visual treat for people from the area.
The artwork has been planned to reflect the community and has elements like Rani Baug, the zoo and other popular buildings in the area, all depicted as a comment on the locality," Ashvin Rajagopalan, Director, Piramal Museum of Art, told this diarist. And why are they bringing art and real estate together? "Mumbai is a large city with a huge space crunch. So, instead of having a dedicated museum, it's good to have people go to different places to look at artwork," he said. And Viraag Desai, who will be painting the mural, agreed, saying, "Public art improves the environment and the community, creating a sense of identity, inclusiveness and celebration of a specific locality."
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