Will the real Kala Ghoda please stand up?

You may have come across a lot of posts on this blog mentioning Kala Ghoda, thanks to the art fest that happens there every year. A lot of my friends wonder why the area is called so, despite there being no Kala Ghoda or black horse (the painting of a black horse on one of the buildings in that area doesn’t count) anywhere in the premise. Time for a history lesson:)

The Kala Ghoda district is called so because there actually was a metal statue of the King Edward VII on his black horse which was installed in now parking lot area, opposite Jehangir Art Gallery. Jewish businessman David Sassoon (yeah, the library named after the same person is right across the street) was the person who got the statue built. The statue was moved from there in 1965 to Rani Baug, but the name of the art district has stuck.

This image was made while i was strolling through Rani Baug on a drizzly day.
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The architecture around South Mumbai always fascinates me and I love to get lost among these old buildings. When I am not busy getting lost, i try to interpret them in as many ways as i can. Now if only i got a chance to shoot within these beautiful monuments, i would get to learn so much. There is something inherently attractive about the history behind these old structures. Abandoned places are the only other spaces that attract me as much, specially the defunct Mills around my locality. Hope to be able to shoot them someday. Till then, South Mumbai old architecture is where i will quench my thirst.

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Wanna Race?

Gothic architecture in South Mumbai is quite abundant. David Sasson Library, one of the oldest functioning Reading room and Library in Mumbai, is one structure that i have photographed countless times. My association with the library grew due to the annual Kala Ghoda Arts Festival, which organises its Literature talks in the garden within the library compound.

Anyways, as i said i have photographed the library many times before so whenever i come to this part of town, i am always on the look out for new ways to photograph this magnificent structure. Couple of weeks back i got a chance to test one DSLR – Canon 1000D – for official purposes. I decided to take it for a spin to the part of Mumbai which i feel is quite photogenic.

The initial idea was to capture the moving vehicles against the backdrop of the Library. So i went in search for a surface to keep the camera steady. While looking for it, i came across these two cars, which were parked in a way that it gave a clear view of the library. So the first plan was canned and thought of composing the photograph using the two cars. Result is as above.

Had a wonderful time shooting with 1000D. That week was one of the most thrilling week at work in terms of the cameras i got to use. I clicked more photographs in three days than i have in the entire year so far. Felt really good to re-connect with my passion which had taken a back seat for quite a while.

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Kala Ghoda Arts Festival is BACK!

This is going to be a non photographic post.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival (KGAF) is one event i eagerly await each year. Its a time when the whole Art District gets a complete artistic makeover. Huge art installations dot the parking lot and the Rampart Row; stalls of Indian ethnic and regional accessories; crowds on the steps opposite the amphitheatre; literature lectures at David Sassoon Library; plays at Horniman Circle; film screenings at Cama Hall and workshops among other things, are like steroids for a culture vulture.

I remember the first time i had visited KGAF was when i was in engineering. I wasnt that into art and culture then, as the only thing that excited me was technology (not that technology dosent excite me now) About two years back i actually started to engage myself in this festival by participating in workshops, being a part of the audience at David Sassoon Library, watching World cinema at Cama Hall. My love for art and culture has grown by leaps and bounds thanks in part to KGAF.

It’s been two hectic days of KGAF, with 7 more days to go. Have attended lots of events so far and have lots to say. Lots of photographs to share as well. So this is like my personal curtain raiser of sorts for the KGAF on my blog.

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