Compiled by Naina Manjrekar
Jasmine Varma on Art
In art, one is drawn to changes as one grows to perceive differently. Yet some images are so powerful they remain with you for ever. One such artist etched in my mind is Kara Walker whose wall scale paper-cut silhouettes are highly engaging in their psychological power. She explores the themes of race and gender. The works of sculptor Dhruva Mistry— the classical forms of the human figure or spatial explorations, the public space works or the smaller studies — have been a huge inspiration.
Varma is an independent curator and writer on art based in Mumbai
R Raj Rao on Books
The book I’d like to recommend is Delhi Noir edited by Hirsh Sawhney. It’s part of a series of crime short stories set in different cities. The book has 14 spine-chilling tales. The one I liked best was Last In, First Out by I Allan Sealy. In the story, bizarre things happen to young student couples in Delhi University who make out at a place known as Delhi Ridge.
Rao is a novelist based in Pune
Milind Date on Music
One of the few musicians who thrive in different types of music is Kedar Pandit. A renowned tabla player and composer, he has worked with Pandit Jasraj, RD Burman and Laxmikant Pyarelal. Singers like Asha Bhosle, Shankar Mahadevan and Sadhana Sargam have sung his compositions.
Date is a composer based in Mumbai
Meghnath on Film
The last movie I saw was Shriprakash’s Eer, which is a Mundari word that translates into “stories in stone”. In my opinion, it’s a landmark film talking about the much-neglected history of tribal people. It looks at that history from a point of view sensitive to their past as well as their present reality, countering many narratives misrepresenting and stereotyping such communities, their approach to religion and culture. It came across as an extremely powerful film by a committed and sincere filmmaker.
Meghnath is a filmmaker based in Ranchi
Mani Mohan Pathak on Food
One of my favourite restaurants in Bengaluru is Higher Taste at ISKCON. Part of the temple, this restaurant serves a wide range of purely vegetarian, sattvik food prepared without the use of garlic and onions. Not only is it extremely impressive in the variety of soups, vegetables and the other delicacies it offers, but also in the high quality of cooking that allows one to relish the natural taste of each ingredient and vegetable that goes into a dish. One can choose between the buffet that offers a rich and wholesome meal or the equally expansive a la carte menu.
Pathak is the sous chef at the Lalit Ashok, Bengaluru