Renu Modi on Art
The late MF Husain has been the torchbearer of Indian art. He truly was the brand ambassador of Indian art and represented it on an international platform. There are a myriad meaning to Husain’s works, they deal with so many different issues. One of my favourite works would be Between the Spider and the Lamp. I believe this is one of the most significant paintings of Husain. The composition, the colours and the stylisation is excellent. I think the lamp is very symbolic of the common man’s life and the painting, for me, represents those everyday struggles on the streets.
Modi is the owner of Gallery Espace, New Delhi
Shashi Deshpande on Books
In her biography Charles Dickens — A Life, Claire Tomalin, who also wrote a biography of Jane Austen, gives an unbiased picture of a much-loved writer. While she writes with admiration for his genius, she also touches upon his cruelty towards the wife he wanted rid off. With its frenetic quality of Dickens’ own life, the book leaves one in awe of the man who gave us immortal characters.
Deshpande is the author of The Binding Vine
Amrit Rao on Music
The Chennai-based band Sean Roldan & Friends make music that is intelligent, simple and honest. You can never go wrong when you mix blues with Tamil. Pangea, the Mumbai-based drone/progressive metal band are not just a band but a trip. Just three live shows old, their sense of sound, tightness and musicianship is impeccable. Advaita, the Delhi-based fusion ensemble truly define their genre with the use of Hindustani and Western vocals. The sound is organic yet international and the fusion is perfect.
Rao is the vocal ist of the band Live Banned
N Manu Chakravarthy on Film
Close Up, an Iranian film by Abbas Kiarostami is a work that concerns all stereotypes about Islam and Iran, especially those generated by the American media. A film on the real life of the famous Iranian filmmaker Mohsen Makhmalbaf, it interrogates the role of the media in sensationalising issues. It also redefines the notions of Islam, especially regarding Islamic Jurisprudence. It compels everybody concerned with the notion of justice and equality to understand non-western societies (especially Islamic societies), going beyond western stereotypes.
Chakravarthy is a bengaluru-based film critic
Bhargav Naresh on Food
Sri Sagar (formerly known as Central Tiffin Room) in Bengaluru is an old and famous food joint in the city that serves really delicious dosas. It is a great place for breakfast, and their butter masala dosa is a must have. Upma, rava kesari and the Mangalore bhajjis are their other south Indian specialties which should be tried out. ctr, as people used to call it, is an old, traditional sort of place with no pretensions towards fine dining. The best part about this place is how consistent the quality of food has been for years. The friendly staff and efficient service ensures a great experience.
Naresh is the former executive chef at Aman Resorts, Jaipur