Love and Longing in Art: Achilles and Patroclus

The story of Achilles and Patroclus is central to the story of Iliad. It is the death of Patroclus – when clad in Achilles’s armour – that ends the feud between Achilles and Agamemnon. It is the death of his friend that ignites Achilles into action, and sets into motion a sequence of events that […]

Envy in Art: Circe, Cain, Time and Fame

Yesterday I wrote a post on envy. Today, even though it’s the day for ‘love and longing’, I found myself gravitating back to the same theme. In the video I shared in my last post, Parul Mathur spoke about how fiction is the best place to find envy. I figured art wouldn’t be too far […]

Photo Post: Monsoon Magic

Don’t we all love the rains? Living in the tropics, we are no strangers to the monsoon. While a very few I know claim that they find rain depressing, most Indians I know love rains. And the magic of the monsoons. Only someone who has faced the scorching Indian summer can truly appreciate the charm of […]

Love and Longing in Art: Troilus and Cressida

Last night, I was reading a re-telling of the Trojan War story by Olivia Coolidge, and I chanced upon the tale of Troilus and Cressida. This is one of the few stories in the Iliad that speaks of a woman’s betrayal of a man. The common theme in mythology is of how men use women […]

Love and Longing in Art: Demeter and Persephone

When we think of the phrase ‘love and longing’, we often just think of romantic love. In today’s post we’ll look at one of Greek mythology’s most famous stories – about the love of a mother for her daughter. Demeter is the Greek goddess of the harvest. If there is a mother-goddess in the Greek […]

The Trouble with Bollywood

At the outset, let us admit something. Cinema is art, craft and commerce, all rolled into one – it has always been so, all around the world. It may have begun as pure art, but had quickly taken on essences of craft (it had to), and gradually morphed into a form of business. Now, wait […]

Love and Longing in Art: Orpheus and Eurydice

Orpheus was a musician, poet and prophet in ancient Greek mythology. Like the Hindu Tumbura and Narada, his music was thought to be so delectable as to melt rocks, coax animals into submission, and to divert the course of rivers. Some versions of the Jason myth name Orpheus as one of the argonauts. However, Orpheus’s […]

Photo Post: Skylines

Kumarakom, Kottayam District, Kerala State, God’s Country. Calm. Placid. The aroma of the tropics in your nose, the buzz of steroid-laden dragonflies in your ears, the gentle burble of the lagoon saturated with promises of carrying your consciousness to the ocean and beyond, the rains that descend like solid shimmering mirrors causing green to erupt […]

Love and Longing in Art: Echo and Narcissus

In Book III of Ovid’s Metamorphoses, he tells the story of Echo, the talkative mountain nymph, and Narcissus, the vain youth from Thespia. Echo The tale, like most tales in mythology, begins with Zeus’s desire to frolic with the mountain nymphs while hiding from the jealous eye of Hera, his wife. Some versions say that Zeus tasked […]

Why Are We Taught To Finish Our Food?

A few weeks back, my mother invited my dad’s maternal uncle over to our place for lunch. This was the first meal he’d had in our house for almost twenty years. After he had his fill, he sat in his favourite chair in our living room, raised his hand and said, Annadaata Sukhibhava (‘blessed is the […]