The first shock – no place to park a vehicle around 200 meters of Jahangir art gallery on the Saturday evening. I kept on playing with the clutch & accelerator for few more minutes and couple of red signals more to get in the Café Mondegar lane and had to fight for another fifteen minutes to get a decent parking. Fair enough, I told myself; at least I don’t have to bother when the towing van will do their dirty job with my vehicle and I can enjoy the paintings & artworks with peace of mind. Another six minutes walk, I was in front of Prince of Wales Museum.
The second shock – the crowd! Gosh, is it a picnic time or time to get the kid’s portrait done by the roadside pencil artists/craftsmen (with due respect, art must have left them long back). People are gathering to get their names written on a rice or getting a quick mehendi done on their palm. And the final shock, some young crowd making tattoos; both temporary and permanent! And we’re calling all these an ‘Art Festival’ cumulatively!
There were three exhibitions of paintings – two within Jahangir Gallery and other one at the Max Muller’s. I don’t think I’m qualified enough to be an art-critic, but being an art lover, I didn’t like any of the works. When I came out of these exhibitions, I started feeling good by looking at photography exhibitions. There were lots, I think first time in Kalaghoda’s history that these numbers of photographers & enthusiasts had participated. Among all, the works from the group ‘Blind with Camera’ (www.blindwithcamra.org) was commendable. Hats off to Mr. Partho Bhowmik who takes all the pain of teaching photography to the blind children just for self-satisfaction. I was overwhelmed, congratulated Partho da there and I expressed my wish to be a part of a workshop with them in future.
I was hungry by then, so thought to have some bites at the Café Samovar. Hard luck, there was a queue waiting for a table there. Well, then I remembered about those yummy kebabs of Bade Miyan, and started walking in jiffy. Another setback – all the tables are full at 7:45 PM and people are waiting! Finally I got a chicken wrap from Gokul’s take away counter and started negotiating with rogue drivers on completely dug-up narrow roads of my sweet Bombay.