artmasterVivek pathak on Art

Simpu Singh Sodhi is my favourite character from Vaibhav Kumaresh’s work. This character in 2d is the most original piece I have encountered in a long time. The character is comical, endearing and has an Indian style, which does not copy orders of any international norm. Simpu Singh ruled our lives in the late 1990s and early 2000s. When Simpu Singh was designed, it was only for promotional purposes. But animation requires characters to play a very important role, each one having distinctive attributes, and Simpu Singh was our friendly neighbourhood smarty pants ‘sardar.’

Pathak is a Bengaluru-based animation artist 

lovelNeeta Gupta  on Books

In recent years, Julian BarnesLevels of Life has had a deep and lasting impact on me. A book difficult to describe, it is a combination of essays, fiction and memoir. While the first two parts of the book deal with ballooning, the third entails Barnes’ grief in the years following the demise of his wife, Pat Kavanagh. A work of grief, the book illuminates the terrible risk that falling in love entails and finally how we deal with loss.

Gupta is a publisher at Yatra Books

ArmanArman Ali Reza Dehlvi  on Music 

For someone who spent his lifetime doing riyaz, Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Saab, the doyen of classical Indian music and thumris, remains unbeatable and incomparable. His song Yaad Piya ki Aaye evokes deep and painful emotions. It is this music, which without any pretense or overdose of anything, can take you into the world of poetry. The song is evergreen; it will move you even if you hear it by chance. 

Dehlvi is a Delhi-based Music composer 

AdityaAnuj Adlakha  on Film 

A film I find absolutely striking is Labour of Love, the debut project of young filmmaker Aditya Vikram Sengupta. With the backdrop of recession in Kolkata, the story brings to light the love of a couple who hardly ever get to see each other — their love, however, blossoms. A seamless mental engagement takes place given that there are no dialogues in the film. Also, no dramatic gestures have been employed by the actors to override the lack of words. The well-written script is the key element of this film. 

Chawla is the vice-president of Osian’s Cinefan Film Festival

Preetha Srinivasan   on food

Tucked away in a corner near Matunga station in Mumbai is a modest restaurant, Ram Ashray — one of my all-time favourites when it comes to south Indian food, especially snacks. Apart from idlis and dosas, I quite like their coconut sevai, the rice noodles flavoured with coconut and tempered with south Indian spices. Also, a popular rice preparation bisi bele bhat, is a must have. All dishes served here are piping hot, so there is little room for complaints. For those with a sweet tooth, I recommend the buns and mango-flavoured sheera. The sweetness here is just right!

Srinivasan is a blogger on 


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