Compiled by Aradhna Wal
Sidhant Gandhi on Art
A painting, more than giving visual pleasure, connects with the vibe around one. An artist puts a part of his soul into it. And when that takes a decade, the work becomes sacred. The Sacred Mirrors series, by American visionary artist Alex Grey, takes the viewer on a journey towards their own divine nature by examining in detail, the body, mind and spirit. Started in 1979, the series took 10 years to complete. The Sacred Mirrors revolves around the context of cosmic, biological and technological evolution. Grey’s depictions of the human body have multiple layers of reality and reveal the interplay of spiritual forces.
Gandhi is a Delhi-based artist and founder of Toosid
Shreekumar Varma on Books
The Wandering Falcon by Jamil Ahmad is gently written, yet speaks of violence and unsettlement. The ‘falcon’ is Tor Baz, making Hitchcock-ian appearances in this collection of stories. Stories of nomadic tribes foxed by borders between Pakistan and Afghanistan, restricting age-old freedom. As I read this desert tapestry of a colourful, earthy people, I felt I lived among them.
Varma is the author of Lament of Mohini
Abhishek Mangla on Music
I have some unconventional choices, and these days I follow Ari Hoenig, a contemporary jazz drummer. I’m trying to get my hands on his album Lines of Oppression. He doesn’t play traditional jazz, but focusses on a more structurally open form. It is a very different way of playing the drums. Words cannot describe it. His is not a static, hard hitting drumming. It embraces the modern form of jazz, which is harmonically simple, but rhythmically improvisatory.
Mangla is a Delhi-based Bassist
Debolina Dutta on Film
Shohini Ghosh’s documentary Tales of the Night Fairy is based on the lives of five sex workers in Kolkata. I saw the movie in law college and it opened up new worlds for me. It is probably the reason why I work with sex workers. The film is the first of its kind in India. It goes beyond, in fact, breaks the sex worker stereotype perpetuated by films and the media; the myth of the perpetually miserable souls living in hellholes. It gives its subjects the dignity of coming across as human beings dealing with life’s problems and negotiating with them on a day-to-day basis.
Dutta is a Delhi-based lawyer and filmmaker
Puranchand Joshi on Food
I go for Ego Obsession in Delhi’s New Friends Colony. A lot of other restaurants are always crowded and noisy. It is hard to truly enjoy a meal in that kind of ambience. Ego, however, is spacious, like your drawing room. The customer feels relaxed, comfortable and at home. The cuisine is mainly Italian and Continental. The menu is extensive and reasonably priced. But what attracts me the most is that it is flexible. The waiters are more than happy to change a dish to suit the customer’s tastes. The Ego kitchen serves you food tweaked to your palate. The service is very friendly too, and best of all, prompt.
Joshi is the manager of the Living room, New Delhi