A Nataraj Sharma exhibition is a rare thing. Chosen as Sotheby’s Best Emerging Asian Artist in 2000, Sharma is as reclusive as he is prolific. This year, however, Mumbai has already been privy to two showings of Sharma’s works. Now, in a wonderful reversal of trends, we get a look at Sharma’s latest works on paper before New York, where they will be on view from March. The works on paper from Stretch are the product of Sharma’s residency at Singapore Tyler Print Institute in 2006. This preview shows a selection of the 55 works deliberating on his favourite themes of urbanisation and modernity.
28 K Dubash Marg, near Rhythm House, Kala Ghoda, Colaba (6610-0124). Mon-Sat 11am-7pm.
Eklavya: The Royal Guard
Releasing Feb 16
Vidhu Vinod Chopra gets behind the camera after a seven-year hiatus to shoot Eklavya against the sandydunes and august forts of Rajasthan. The film stars Amitabh Bachchan as a royal guard who’s unable to prevent the assassination of Rana Jaywardhan, to whom he has sworn loyalty. While he vows to avenge his master’s death, other intrigues are playing out inside the fort’s stone walls: foreign-returned son Harshwardhan is facing the same fate as his father, and the immediate suspects are his rapacious uncle and his cousin brother. Eklavya also stars Parineeta’s lovelies, Vidya Balan and Raima Sen. All major cinema halls.
Jabbar Patel’s acclaimed 1980 political drama still has resonance. Vijay Tendulkar bases his script on writings by journalist Arun Sadhu. A journalist unearths the seamy political underside of Maharashtrian politics when he stumbles upon a phone–tapping racket. The cast includes some of Marathi cinema’s best actors, such as Nilu Phule, Arun Sarnaik, Shreeram Lagoo and Nana Patekar.
YB Chavan Centre, General Jagannath Bhosle Marg, Nariman Point (2204-7252), 6.30pm.
Out & About
As the commercial capital of India, Mumbai’s heart lies in its markets. Deepa Krishnan’s Mumbai Magic takes you walking through two of the quirkiest markets of the city every Saturday. One option: join her guides on a trek through Chor Bazaar, which is treasure trove of bric-a-brac, from antique chandeliers and old film posters to car parts long out-of-service. Another: take the long trail from Crawford Market to Bhuleshwar.
1403/04, 14th Floor, Tower A, Dosti Elite, Sion (E). Call Deepa Krishnan at 98677-07414. $30 or Rs1,350 per head.
Partho Bhowmick, an IT professional and photography enthusiast, ties up with the Victoria Memorial School for the Blind to showcase works by visually impaired photographers. Bhowmick believes that it is possible to “see the world through the mind’s eye”. For instance, participant Manish Umrrania’s beautiful play on shadows was shot on a sunny Sunday afternoon near the Parsi well in Churchgate. By touching the lower branches of a tree and feeling the warmth of the summer sun over his head, Umrrania surmised that the tree wasn’t dense. “By imagining the ‘designer’ shadow on the footpath, I took this photo,” Umrrania said. Centre for Photography as an Art-Form, Piramal Gallery, National Centre for the Performing Arts, Nariman Point, 11am-7pm.
Mumbai International Boat Show
Luxury boats, power boats, and sail boats will line up on Mumbai’s shore for the first time for the first Mumbai International Boat Show. Though Mumbai has no marina to park boats as yet, Mumbaikars are ready to purchase the boats, said organiser Malav Shroff. The boats will be parked at the Gateway of India on an artificial marina and will also be on display at the Bandra Kurla Complex. However, the pass required to view the boats on water will be available at the Bandra-Kurla Complex. The powerful machines can cost anything from Rs10 lakh to a few crores. So bring your chequebooks along. Gateway of India, Apollo Bunder. Bandra-Kurla Ground, Bandra-Kurla Complex, Bandra (E). 10am-9pm. Call Radhika Jhaveri at 6451-5820.
Life and Nothing Else
From Feb 16
The photography exhibition “Trotz Alledem—Alltag in Afghanistan” (Despite it All—Daily Life in Afghanistan) was first shown in Kabul in December 2004. Co-sponsored by the Goethe-Institut in Kabul and headed by German photographer Wolfgang Bellwinkel, the project was conceived as an educational venture by a group of Afghan photographers who wanted to document the current changes in their country from an insider’s perspective. The photographs are fine examples of both photo-journalism and artistic methods, and present a multi-faceted view of the often stereotyped country. At the Siddhartha Hall. Max Mueller Bhavan, 3 Kasturba Gandhi Marg (2332-9506), Tue-Sat (closed on Mondays) 11am-6pm.
SH Raza Retrospective
From Feb 22
Part of Art Alive Gallery’s Swasti Festival, this retrospective marks SH Raza’s 85th birthday. The exhibition presents a comprehensive overview of Raza’s paintings over the past two decades. The festival also includes a poetry festival, a book release on Raza’s life, a show of abstract art, and a dance and music performance. National Gallery of Modern Art, Jaipur House, India Gate (2338-6111). Tue-Sun, 10am-5pm.
New Delhi Private Limited
A city on the move, Delhi is being systematically transformed. The question is: For whose benefit? It has the biggest malls, the grandest flyovers, the poshest business centres and the most hi-tech temples. At the same time, its slums are razed to the ground and beggars are driven from footpaths, parks and other public spaces.
Those same spaces are being renovated and managed by private agencies. Director Ravinder Randhawa’s 35-minute film raises some uncomfortable questions about Delhi as it exists, as it is likely to become and as it, perhaps, should become.
A panel discussion with activists Dunu Roy and Imrana Qadeer will follow. India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road (2468-2222). 6.30pm
Shankarlal Music Festival
Don’t miss this cornerstone of the Delhi cultural calendar. This year’s edition features performances by legends like Pandit Jasraj, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma and Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasiya, besides appearances by Pandit Channulal Mishra, Kushal Das and Shanti Sharma. One of the oldest festivals of its kind in India, the Shankarlal Music Festival was established in 1947 by Sumitra Charat Ram of the DCM industrial family. An important platform for classical musicians, it is now run entirely by the Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra. Kamani Auditorium, 1 Copernicus Marg, Mandi House (2338-8084). Invitations available from 13 Feb at Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra 1 Copernicus Marg, Mandi House (2338-6428). Free, 7pm.
Out & About
Hindu Gods and Goddesses Rooted in Japan
Most people know that Buddhism, widely practiced in Japan, has its roots in India. What’s not well known is the existence of Hindu deities in a different form in the temples of Japan. Join Lokesh Chandra in a fascinating talk on the impact of Indian religion and culture on Japanese society. The lecture is part of an ongoing series of lectures on the cultural links between Japan and India that mark Japan-India friendship year. India International Centre Annexe, 40 Max Mueller Marg (2461-9431). Free, 6.30pm.
Chainpur ki Dastaan
Chainpur, an imaginary town located somewhere in north India, some time in the past, forms the location for Nikolai Gogol’s celebrated satirical play, The Inspector-General. In Amitabh Srivastava’s adaptation, the town is infested with corrupt officials. When the townsfolk discover that the central government is sending a couple of secret officer to investigate their wrongdoings, they conspire to keep them in check. As it turns out, the officers are escaped convicts. A series of comic situations and three love-affairs follow. Shri Ram Centre for Performing Arts, 4 Safdar Hashmi Marg (2371-4307), 7pm. Tickets available through tele-booking from 11 Feb at 99683-07174 and at the venue on show days, anytime after 2pm.
Paris National Opera Children’s Choir
Since its inception in 1985, the children’s choir at France’s leading opera house has built up quite a reputation.
On its three-city tour of India, it will perform baroque composer Henry Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas. Based on a story from the fourth book of Virgil’s Aeneid, this short opera in English tells the story of the queen of Carthage and a Trojan refugee. Kamani Auditorium, 1 Copernicus Marg, Mandi House (2338-8084). Invitations available at Neemrana Foundation, A-50 Nizamuddin East (2435-5891). Free, 7pm.