RAM KUMAR ON ART
I do not leave my home too often, so the most recent work I have really seen and admired is from a few years ago — there was a series |of realistic paintings made by Atul Dodiya, Reflections and Images displayed at the Vadehra Art Gallery that struck me because of their photograph like realism. His style later changed and perhaps evolved, but the memory of that series is still fresh in my mind as his most significant work. VS Gaitonde was the first abstract artist whose work I became familiar with, and I feel I really began to understand his work once I developed a close personal friendship with him that lasted over 50 years. Another close friend of mine is the very versatile MF Husain – who creates works of art at such a rapid pace that while some of them are incredible, some quite ordinary. My favourite painting by him has always been Between the Spider and the Lamp.
Kumar is an abstract painter, as well as a Hindi fiction writer
PARO ANAND ON BOOKS
I’m on the last chapter of Rohinton Mistry’s Firozsha Baag, a collection of intertwining stories about the various families that live on the separate floors of a Parsi multi-storey building. Mistry’s allure lies in his amazing ability to create these characters that you feel like you just have to meet! Another book I adore is Kalpana Swaminathan’s The True Adventures of Prince Teen Tang, the story of a prince who is born with three legs. It is a sharp and witty political satire which even small children can really enjoy — not an easy task to accomplish. A book that I feel should exist in every library is 1001 Children’s Books To Read Before You Grow Up, an annotated and age-wise categorised review of the stories everyone must read before they become too serious to do so! The book also has three Indian titles in it.
Anand is the author of The Little Bird Who Held The Sky Up With His Feet
KONKONA SEN SHARMA ON FILM
One of my all-time favourites is Blowup by Michelangelo Antonioni, his first English language film. It questions the nature of reality. We usually perceive reality through our senses, and the movie tries to reinterpret and explore various such perceptions. Another of my favourites is Francois Truffaut’s Jules et Jim, a fast- paced French classic, about two men and a spirited woman that they both fall in love with.
Sen Sharma is an actor and has appeared in films like Wake Up Sid and Luck By Chance
SAHIL GUPTA ON FOOD
I have fallen in love with this quaint little Korean restaurant near Green Park called Gung, which I recently discovered. It is the only place that I have come across in Delhi that serves authentic Korean food. It also has an extremely tasteful ambience, with low seating and beautifully picturesque menus that really make you feel like you are in Korea and also very very hungry! I would say the place’s specialty apart from its all-female staff is that they cook your food right at your table, making you really drool with anticipation. Right at the other end of the spectrum in terms of pricing and decor is Minar in Greater Kailash-I which I have frequented for the past 20 years for its delicious butter chicken. I would rate the place right up there with Bukhara or any other fancy restaurant, perhaps also because of the fond memories I have of the place.
Gupta is the owner of Ploof and The Kitchen
DHAVAL MUDGAL ON MUSIC
I had heard a couple of Porcupine Tree albums before, but ever since I attended their concert in Mumbai in December I seem to have developed a voracious appetite for all their music — I just can’t seem to stop listening to them! For a relaxed mood I like John Mclaughlin’s Friday Nights at San Francisco, but for a slightly more upbeat frame of mind I prefer Audioslave’s self titled album. The song Shadow on the Sun is my favourite song by them — the way it evolves from its starting notes and the way Chris Cornell has sung it is just brilliant. Obviously the best vocals ever has to be Eddie Vedder’s, but the vocalist that really influences my style and our band’s music is Dave Mathews.
Mudgal is the lead vocalist for the band Half Step Down