Mumbai Diary: Wednesday Dossier
The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce
Overwhelmed by their mallakhamb prowess, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan congratulates visually challenged students at an athletic meet in Juhu on Tuesday. Pic/Suresh Karkera
Breathing life into architecture
At the 34th Coomaraswamy lecture organised by the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya on Monday, Pritzker Prize Laureate and eminent architect BV Doshi spoke to an audience of scholars, architects, historians and urban planners.
He highlighted the importance of having an element of flexibility in architecture and recalled how while he was working on the design of IIM Ahmedabad, several directors changed and his design had to be organic enough to absorb these changes. He also advised against creating spaces that don't allow us to live different seasons and experience nature. Words of wisdom for the city's rapidly changing streetscape.
The Godfather of food in India
Such is the power of British chef Marco Pierre White's steely gaze that even the best of the chefs would doubt their techniques. Fans of one of the most popular and widely followed chefs in the world will be delighted to know that White will arrive in Mumbai on January 19 and 20 as part of the gourmet food festival, World on Plate.
Fans will also get a chance to be a part of two masterclasses at Palladium in Lower Parel, and sneak in a chance to have a memorable photograph with the culinary maestro.
Gone too soon
As news of artist Tushar Joag's sudden death reached Mumbai, a pall of gloom descended over the city's art world. The well-known artist died of a massive heart attack. He was 52. "A public intervention artist who politicises his art and attempts to aestheticise politics", as Joag described himself, he lived most of his life in Mumbai before moving to Greater Noida where he established the department of art at the Shiv Nadar University with his wife Sharmila Samant.
A Bachelor of Fine Arts from Sir JJ School of Art, he completed his MFA from the MS University in Vadodara — where years later, he withdrew from an international festival when the university allegedly faced attacks from right wing groups. Urban development, displacement and citizenship, and political satire were some of the key themes of his work, which included a 53-day motorcycle ride from Mumbai to Shanghai to highlight the appropriation of water from Tibetan lakes by the Chinese government.
He was also an advisor for the art education programme for children by Art1st, a Mumbai-based initiative. When this diarist reached out to Art1st founder Ritu Khoda, and poet and art crtic Ranjit Hoskote, both shared that they were too shocked by the news to comment.
A tell-all from the Sinhas
It began with The Paradoxical Prime Minister by Shashi Tharoor, but when it comes to literary attacks on the current government, this one is going to hit harder. Yashwant Sinha's book India Unmade: How the Modi Government Broke the Economy, co-written with mid-day columnist Aditya Sinha will be released later this week.
A known critic of the Prime Minister, the book by Sinha — who was the Finance Minister of India from 1998 to 2002 — speaks of why he feels the GDP numbers are misleading, how the RBI's autonomy is in danger, how there is no comparison between Narendra Modi and AB Vajpayee, and why demonetisation is a huge banking scam. Do we hear fireworks?
A dance for a cause
The city will witness a rather special dance performance on December 21. Dance, of course, is an art form that can truly encapsulate a sense of joi de verve. And that's why a group of four international dance teachers have been invited by the Magic Bus Foundation to teach ballet and hip-hop to around 30 underprivileged children from Thane and Kalwa.
Hailing from diverse countries such as the UK, US and Singapore, the teachers — Kimberley Martin, Clare Tay, Nicola Ciotta and Kathie Tiffany — have been holding workshops in the two genres, with the rehearsals culminating in a performance on Friday. The entire process is being supervised by Andy Martin, a teacher who works with children who have special needs. All in all, it seems that this is one Christmas that the children will remember forever.
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