Compiled by Manjula Narayan
RM Palaniappan on Art
I like VS Gaitonde for his colour and texture, Velupillai Vishwananthan for how he combines Indian reds and greens with patterns, and SH Raza also for his patterns of colours. I enjoy how Prabhakar Kolte hides colours. In some of his work, he’s flattened them and then has other colours peeping up in between! Among print makers, I likeKrishna Reddy’s colour blending and technique and Jyoti Bhatt’s folk forms. The sensibilities in Laxma Goud’s drawing and the organisation of strong lines in RV Bhaskara’s work are remarkable. When I look at the work of KG Subramanyam and L Ponnuswamy, both of whom are teachers, artists, writers and thinkers, my mind is refreshed. I don’t want to comment on the works of younger artists because there are so many!
Palaniappan is a printmaker who lives in Chennai
PG Tenzing on Books
Right now, I’m reading Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond. It’s a short history of the world for the last 13,000 years and it’s a fascinating look at how civilisations have been shaped. It was recommended by a friend and I picked it up because I have an abiding interest in why we are here and why we are doing what we are doing. One should keep trying to understand these big questions even if, in the end, there are no answers! My old favourites include PG Wodehouse and Tom Sharpe.
Tenzing is the author of Don’t Ask Any Old Bloke For Directions. He lives in Gangtok
Adnan Vahanvaty on Food
I am a foodie and I have a very experimental palate. Scorpions are perhaps the only thing I haven’t tasted. I’ve even had crocodile, which actually chews like chicken and is a white meat. Of course, you can’t get all this sort of stuff in India. Here, I’d recommend Kareem’s in Delhi, which has been a personal favourite for many years. I recently sampled the food at a place called Kakori House and it was so good that this morning I woke up, thought about that meal and said, ‘Wow’. It’s owned by Imtiaz Qureshi who started off in Mumbai and now has an outlet in GK1 M Block Market in Delhi too. I’m a complete meat eater but I tried their vegetarian kakori kababs and they were so good that I went back to ask them if they hadn’t mistakenly given me the non-vegetarian ones! Then, there’s Cacao at Select City Walk in Delhi. It’s a small place but the quality of the food there is consistently brilliant.
Vahanvaty runs Bagels and Brownies in Delhi
Nandini Shrikent on Film
I enjoyed the Japanese film Departures that won an Oscar for best foreign film this year. It’s quirky with some typical Japanese humour and a touching, sensitive story. I also loved Burn After Reading which has a great script, crisp dialogues, a good plot, a superb star cast and clever performances. I like anything to do with American politics! Others might not agree but I thoughtTropic Thunder directed by Ben Affleck was very good too. Among recent Indian films, Little Zizou was a warm, compassionate compassionate and funny film. Also, I really would like to watch Mirch Masala yet again.
Shrikent is a casting director who lives in Mumbai
Audiopervert on Music
I stayed in Germany for a bit and heard Trent Moller there. He plays minimalist electronic music, which is an interesting combination of keeping space in music while maintaining the groove. I also like Goldfrapp. Their latest album — 65 Days of Static — is an amalgamation of rock and electronic music with very lyrical songs. Another duo I really like is Telephone Tel Aviv from Chicago, USA whose work has just been released in India.
Audiopervert is part of the electronic duo Teddy Boy Kill. He lives in Delhi