Compiled by Priyam Bagga
Tanvi Madkaiker on Art
Photographer Prabuddha Dasgupta’s career spanned three decades. His pathbreaking book Women is a collection of portraits of urban Indian women, many of whom are in the nude. The book is timeless. Even today, any Indian woman will be able to identify with women in the frame, as his representation went beyond physicality. The models look vulnerable, yet strong and independent at the same time. Some of the women break gender stereotypes while others fit beautifully into them. One that comes to mind is the portrait of Maharani Gayatri Devi. His work had a bold style that was way ahead of his time.
Madkaiker is a Mumbai-based photographer
Rakhshanda Jalil on Books
Saadat Hasan Manto’s body of work has a lot of significance even today. Bombay Stories documents a prolific period of his life when he spent 13 years in that city. Even though Manto loved cosmopolitan life, he left it for an Islamic state. That is a question that has befuddled many. My favourite story is Sahai, in which he gives us a perspective on what it meant to be a Muslim during Partition.
Bombay Stories documents a period when Manto spent 13 years in the city’
Jalil is the author of Release and Other Stories
Siddharth Basrur on Music
Fink, a singer-songwriter and DJ from UK, will play at the Bengaluru leg of NH7 Weekender next month. His deceptively simple lyrics make him a true storyteller. His music is deep and when he plays, you can feel the love. Another underrated Indie-rock band is People in Planes. Their second album Beyond the Horizon has influenced my music writing and composition.
Basrur is a Mumbai-based musician
Govind Padmasoorya on Film
The aptly-titled Italian tragicomedy Life is Beautiful is a film I keep coming back to. It makes you look at the cruelty of the Nazi regime through the filter of whims and imagination, something that must have been very difficult to achieve. The enthusiasm for life is infused into each frame. The protagonist, played by Roberto Benigni, brings humour in everything he does. Benigni, who has also directed the film, makes acting look effortless, but as an audience, we can sense the complexity of the character.
Padmasoorya is a Kerala-based actor
Julia Carmendesa on Food
Cafe Delhi Heights in Gurgaon is a place worth a visit. The setting is very unpretentious, with a nice show kitchen and a pleasant atmosphere in the usually full locale, which looks somewhat like a pub. The music played is always good. I was very impressed by the prompt service; it felt very ‘European’. Apart from this, the dishes served are simple and tasty. I would recommend the Moroccan stew of vegetables or their grilled prawns served with a sesame citrus emulsion. It’s a foodie’s delight.
Carmendesa is the chef of Tres, New Delhi