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Mumbai Diary: Friday Dossier

Updated on: 14 April,2023 06:54 AM IST  |  Mumbai
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The city - sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce

Mumbai Diary: Friday Dossier

Pic/Ashish Raje

New Air Jordans

Two youngsters use jumping stilts to perform aerial acrobatics at Shivaji Park. 

Conversation about a legacy

Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar.  Pic Courtesy/Wikimedia CommonsDr Babasaheb Ambedkar.  Pic Courtesy/Wikimedia Commons

The launch of Aakash Singh Rathore’s book, Becoming Babasaheb at the Mumbai Research Centre and Asiatic Society of Mumbai this Saturday, has quite a few subtexts. Rathore said, “The book seeks to bring out a few unknown details of his life.” A day after Dr Ambedkar’s birth anniversary (April 14), the author will be joined by parliamentarian Shashi Tharoor, who also wrote Ambedkar: A Life. Recalling Dr Ambedkar’s own tryst with Asiatic Society’s iconic Town Hall, Rathore remarked, “I find it significant to have the launch at the place where he laid the foundation for his legacy and history.”

Aakash Singh Rathore

Spot the big bug

Spot the big bug

This diarist is always happy to spot interesting public art installations. So, when we noticed a giant praying mantis inside the Children’s Science Park at Nehru Science Centre, we were keen to learn more about its origins. The insect model that towers at approximately 17 feet, was set up to serve as an educational tool, a representative from the Nehru Science Centre told us. We believe that such fun ideas can go a long way in encouraging children to learn more about our invertebrate friends. 

Dancing her way to London

 Anjana Ghonasgi; (right) A moment from Ghonasgi’s filmAnjana Ghonasgi; (right) A moment from Ghonasgi’s film

City-based dancer and experimental filmmaker Anjana Ghonasgi  is riding a new experimental wave. Seeking a creative way to battle her own demons, she used her dance training to express the struggle, which eventually translated to film. Now, her film, (Un) Seen has been picked up by two film festivals for screenings in the upcoming months. The film will feature as part of the selection for the Experimental Dance Music film Festival online across the United States and Canada on April 21, followed by the FrameRush film festival, London — the city’s annual screendance movie festival. “It is the only Indian film at the festival,” the filmmaker revealed. Describing the film, she said, “It was developed as part of a dance filmmaking incubator organised by AuroApaar Manifest Dance Film Incubator in 2022. We shot and completed the project in August last year. The story is very personal to me, and expresses my journey and relationship with mental health. In that way, it feels personal and makes me proud thinking of how far it has come.”

Be a rebel

Hip-hoppers at a previous cypher by Wild Wild Women in Marol Art Village, AndheriHip-hoppers at a previous cypher by Wild Wild Women in Marol Art Village, Andheri

Walk down Carter Road’s promenade this Sunday evening, and you might hear some new sounds. The hip-hop collective, Wild Wild Women will host their first Rebel Girls cypher of 2023 for artists all over the city. Pratika Prabhune, founding member of the collective, shared, “We met for the first time when we did a cypher.” The event, she added, is an opportunity for others like herself to discover their talents and express them freely. “It is a call for everyone who writes poems in their diaries, but is afraid to show them off. Women who beatbox, but don’t have a space to practise their art. We are hoping this will encourage all of them to step out of their houses, offices and join us. All of us felt that this is something that would empower them,” Prabhune remarked. Despite the focus on women, the cypher itself is not gender-demarcated, she clarified. “Whether it is artists who are inspired by us to paint a canvas, skateboarders, break dancers, the event is open to all, and free to participate in.” Now, that’s a good weekend gig to try.

Sticking with the Kolis

The stickers created by Paul are inspired by the indigenous Koli community.  Pic Courtesy/InstagramThe stickers created by Paul are inspired by the indigenous Koli community.  Pic Courtesy/Instagram

When it comes to blending art and cause, Mumbai artist Priyanka Paul likes to play her part. Through her social media handle, @artwhoring, the artist is offering stickers inspired by the city’s indigenous Koli community. “They are the original indigenous residents of the city. Today, the community has been hit hard by the pandemic, coastal development and industrial fishing. Drawing attention to this cause is the need of the hour. We need to stand by and preserve indigenous communities that have taught us all to live sustainably. Mumbai, after all, is its people,” she said.

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