Mumbai Diary: Sunday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Agent no. 1
It's not for nothing that writers make a beeline for literary agent Kanishka Gupta of Writer's Side. Gupta recently became the sixth highest dealmaker on publishersmarketplace.com, which is a dedicated marketplace for publishing professionals. Having cracked close to 100 deals in 12 months with mainstream Indian publishers, Gupta finds himself among the crème de la crème of agents.
“It has been a roller coaster ride. I hardly get time to process manuscripts and contracts, but that is where having a large, highly qualified editorial team helps. I've also realised that agenting is mostly about people management. It's good people management that distinguishes a successful agent from a not so successful one,” an elated Gupta told this diarist.
Can't 'stand' this change!
Our in-house cricket enthusiast is late on this one, but his question seems valid: How come the Vijay Merchant Stand got renamed Vijay Merchant Pavilion when the Wankhede Stadium was renovated for the 2011 World Cup? Our man's eyes popped out the other day when the television camera panned on the West part of the Wankhede Stadium and the word 'Pavilion' got him thinking about the time when it was always known as the Vijay Merchant Stand. However, there is no alteration to the Sunil Gavaskar Stand which is opposite the Merchant one.
A view of the Vijay Merchant Pavilion during the Mumbai Indians v Delhi Daredevils Indian Premier League match on April 14. Pic/Suresh Karkera
It's only a matter of a word (pavilion or stand), but our cricket fanatic argues that there is a huge difference between a pavilion and a stand and the MCA should have stuck to the original name. By the way, the map on bookmyshow.com, the portal which the public uses to buy Indian Premier League tickets, says Vijay Merchant Stand.
Cookin' it up in Maldives
Come May, chef Prateek Sadhu of Masque, a fine dining restaurant at Mahalaxmi, will travel to Soneva Fushi in the Maldives as a visiting chef, as part of the luxury resort's campaign, Festival of Colours. It's an event that will see 28 of the world's top chefs.
“It all happened last October when Soneva's Indian-British founder Sonu Shivdasani visited us at Masque. He loved the meal so much that he decided to extend an invitation,” says Sadhu. The Kashmiri chef plans to showcase Indian cuisine through different courses. “I will carry spices from the Valley and a few indigenous ingredients like morels,” he adds.
IIT-B's moment in the sun
This one's another feather in the cap for IIT Bombay. A team from the institute took home the first prize for the 'sunlight based chulha design' contest held by ONGC, under the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas. The task was to build a sun-oriented stove framework for which over 1,500 entries were received. The teams had to demonstrate the cooking twice, once during the day and one after sunset.
After being evaluated on parameters like ability to cook all types of Indian dishes, adaptability in the kitchen and cooking time required, IIT-B was chosen as the winner. The team that was mentored by professor Chetan Solanki also won a cash prize of Rs 10lakh.
Au revoir, Hugo Weihe
We were thrilled to learn that Hugo Weihe joined Saffronart in 2015 and will miss him equally so, now that news of his resignation has been announced. Weihe will step down as CEO of the auction house at the end of May, with Saffronart's co-founder Dinesh Vazirani stepping into the role. Weihe is well-known in the art market here and abroad as the auctioneer who defined and re-positioned sale categories for Saffronart, helping establish it as a market leader in India. Before his three-year tenure with Saffronart, Weihe was with Christie's.
He proposed its first auction in Mumbai in 2013; in 2015, he helmed Christie's auction where a painting by VS Gaitonde became the highest fetching work by an Indian artist. As Saffronart's auctioneer. Weihe, we are told, will be looking forward to new avenues of continued engagement with the art world. What we will surely miss, for now, is his spirited style of auctioneering. We hope to see him back, doing what he does best, soon.
Sprinting in style
Model Ujjwala Raut makes a dash for it at a mall in Kurla on Friday. Pic/Sayed Sameer Abedi
Mob thrashes man for unfurling tricolour before Independence Day