Each year, People for Animals brings out a large exhibition of work that they believe is under-represented in other shows. This year, the group presents a huge collection of antique prints, from engravings to lithographs. The prints span 200 years of history from the late 18th century onwards and include work by William and Thomas Daniell as well as other travellers, artists and administrators from the Raj era. 10am-8pm. Intercontinental The Grand, Barakhamba Avenue, Connaught Place (2341-1001). Free.
Tsampa on my shoulder
12 August onwards
An exhibition of black-and-white prints by Vidura Jang Bahadur, who captures the people and landscapes of Tibet through his lens. The Capital has had a rush of good photography shows of late. But Vidura Jang Bahadur’s exhibition is stellar—understated, powerful and technically perfect. The 32 works in this show have been selected carefully and each stands alone. “I have seen a lot of images of Tibet, but I’m not really moved by much of it,” he said. “I have tried to show a very different side of Tibet.” 11am-7pm (Tue-Sun). Bodhi Art Gallery, Grand Mall, Lower Ground Floor, Mehrauli-Gurgaon Road, Gurgaon (95124- 4375190). Free.
Hari Bhari Khwahish
Set in Govindpuri, Torit Mitra’s play tells the story of a woman from rural Bengal who comes to New Delhi in search of a sister and finds herself in conflict with her wheeler-dealer brother-in-law. 7pm (Duration: 2 hours, 10 minutes). Little Theatre Group Auditorium, Copernicus Marg, next to Kamani Auditorium (2338-9713). Free. Invitations available at the venue.
Toba Tek+Partition Dastans
Pakistan’s Ajoka Theatre marks the 60th anniversary of Partition and Indian and Pakistani independence by performing Manto’s famous short story, Toba Tek Singh. Preceding the play are readings by Javed Akhtar and Shabana Azmi and a performance of dastan by Mahmood Farooqui and Danish Hussain. They draw on literary works by Intezar Husain and Krishna Sobti. 6pm (Duration: 1 hour, 20 minutes). India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road, Lodhi Estate (2468-2222). Free. Invitations available at the Habitat programme desk from 7 August for IHC members only. Open to all from 10 August , subject to availability.
Out & About
The Monsoon Festival: Hariyali Teej
The third annual Monsoon Festival kicks off with a mini-mela and traditional flower-bedecked swings to celebrate the traditional festival of Teej. German photographer Christina Zuck will photo-document “green guests” at the “Green Opening” experiment. 7-10pm. Travancore Palace, Kasturba Gandhi Marg (2338-2067).
A rough replica of the head of The Dying Gaul sits on a pedestal, but you see only glimpses of its pallor. Projected images fall on the sharply etched features of the bust. From alabaster white, the face turns a warm shade of brown and it speaks of death and paradise. Some of the projections fit perfectly on the bust, turning the Gaul into a Pathan. At other times, the projected face doesn’t match as well and the face turns mangled and twisted. The work has been constructed in such a way that it seems as though the bust is speaking. “It looks strangely real even though you know it’s not,” says Mortimer Chatterjee of Chatterjee & Lal Gallery, which will feature Sophie Ernst’s ‘Paradise Now’ as its inaugural exhibition this fortnight. “She uses the technology in a really interesting way.” 11am-7pm (Mon-Sat). Chatterjee & Lal Gallery, Kamal Mansion, 1/18 First Floor, Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba (6521-5105).
The Blue Umbrella
Releasing 10 August
When Biniya trades her bear-claw locket for a blue Japanese umbrella, she has no clue that she is setting into motion the events that will lead to the ruin of Nand Kishore Khatri, teastall owner and curmudgeon with a vast appetite for envy. Khatri is obsessed with Biniya’s twirling chhatri and will stoop as low as his creaking body possibly allows in order to get his hands on it. Like his debut children’s feature Makdee, Vishal Bhardwaj’s The Blue Umbrella shows a light-heartedness, simplicity, and respect for children’s intelligence. (Duration: 1 hour, 30 minutes). Major cinemas.
Out & About
Should an assault on a painter or the suppression of a documentary film be of interest only to the arts community? Or, should it be seen by citizens as an attack on their most basic freedoms? A panel discussion on the aggressive claims being made by political interests on cultural activity and the renewal of democracy by citizens groups that are opposing these attempts. 6.30pm. Prithvi House, First Floor, opposite Janki Kutir, Juhu Church Road, Near Hotel Tulip Star (2614-9546). Free.
Nehru Centre’s annual national theatre festival kicks off with Amal Allana’s Nati Binodini, a portrait of the life and times of one of Bengal’s first female theatre actors. Binodini joined the stage in the mid-19th century, a time when men enacted female roles and women associated with theatre were looked down upon. Binodini’s career blossomed under the guidance of actor-manager Girish Ghosh and she played major roles such as Manorama in Bankim Chandra’s Mrinalini and Pramila in Michael Madhusudan Dutt’s Meghnath Badh. 7.30pm (Duration: 1 hour, 45 minutes). Nehru Centre Auditorium, Dr Annie Besant Road, Worli (2496-4680). All performances at the festival are free. Passes will be available on 10 August from 10.30am.
Hohenlohe Brass Quintet
Hohenlohe Brass—which includes a quintet, a quartet, a 10-piece ensemble and a trombone ensemble—was founded in 1994 in Öhringen, the largest town in Hohenlohe, Germany. The Quintet, which is visiting India this fortnight, plays anything it can get its horns on: from Bach and chamber music, through soppy romantic arrangements, spirituals, jazz and the Beatles to film music. The programme, called ‘Divertimento for Brass’, is presented in collaboration with the Time and Talents Club. 6.30pm. Tata Theatre, NCPA, Near Hilton Tower, Nariman Point (6622-3737). Tickets: Rs200, Rs120, Rs80.
Motley’s well-known production, starring Naseeruddin Shah and Ratna Pathak Shah, tells the story of the intense relationship between playwright George Bernard Shaw and famous actress Stella Campbell through the hundreds of letters they wrote to each other over the years. The play describes their deep admiration and love for each other, while also serving as a chronicle of the period from 1895-1939, an era that witnessed the two world wars, the end of the Edwardian era and with it, the end of a way of life so dear to people such as Campbell. The show is being organized in aid of CanSupport. Donor cards (Rs1,000) available at Kanak Durga Basti Vikas Kendra, Sector 12, R K Puram (call 26102851/69 between 9.30am and 5.30pm). 7pm (duration: 2 hours, 20 minutes). Kamani Auditorium, 1, Copernicus Marg, Mandi House (2338-8084). Mandi House.
Asia Society India Centre and Jnanapravaha have organized a series of events revolving around Partition.
11 August (6.30pm-9.30pm)
Partition and Living with Oneself:A lecture by eminent social scientist Ashis Nandy (Duration: 45 minutes).
The Sky Below: Sara Singh’s contemporary portrait of the region from Kutch to Kashmir and from Karachi to the Khyber Pass (Duration: 1 hour, 15 minutes).
A Season Outside: In his acclaimed documentary, Amar Kanwar revisits his family’s experiences with Partition and examines his views on Gandhian non-violence (Duration: 30 minutes).
12 August (4pm-9.30pm)
Khayal Darpan: New Delhi-based film-maker Yousuf Saeed studies the development of classical music in Pakistan after 1947-48 and comes up against some basic questions: How does a religion that frowns upon idol worship coexist with the singing of ragas named after gods or goddesses? How is cultural heritage carved up? (Duration: 1 hour, 40 minutes).
Rabba Hun Kee Kariye: The ones who were left behind wonder about the ones who left in Ajay Bhardwaj’s moving documentary. The film-maker interviews musicians, writers and ordinary Punjabis to collect eyewitness accounts of what happened during Partition and how this affected life in the region (Duration: 1 hour, 15 minutes).
Panel Discussion on Representing History: The participants are film-makers Sara Singh, Yousuf Saeed and Ajay Bhardwaj; the moderator, film-maker Paromita Vohra (Duration: 40 minutes). Jnanapravaha, 3rd Floor, Queens Mansion, AK Nayak Marg, Fort (220702974/5). Call Avanti Bhati of the Asia Society India Centre (6610-0888). Free.