Wednesday, May 09, 2007

sanah in the city

it was friday evening. ignoring my flu i put her on my hip and we were off!

first the train, more crowded than usual i groaned when i saw that there was no empty seat, and barely enough standing space. but i had just about grabbed the handle swinging above that a whole array of arms came forth offering to hold sanah. ample laps ( ample both in the sense of numbers and size) were offered. sanah chose the one next to the window. the baby in his mother's arms next to the lady at the window howled in protest. why was the window lap not offered to him! the window lap opposite sanah was promptly made available to him. the little boy and sanah looked coyly at one another and then out of the window and that was that- a peaceful journey from borivali to churchgate.

crazy elephants and mad bulls stand proudly at the IMC footpath. i look up to see a whole host of them looming large above me as well. the psychedelic animals in my head materialise in life size all around me. now, thats trippy.

bun maska and orange tea (in colour not flavour) in stadium and i am ready for my evening out!

off we go to vasudha thozhur's show. the quiet violence in those meditative works was what struck me. she lives in baroda, has been witness to the violence there.

and sanah, she did look at each work carefully trying to make sense. she makes eye contact with the larger than life vasudha, her head being shaved off. sanah points to the blood on her shoulders. the resplendent peacock. the disembodied leg. i dont know if it disturbs her as it does me- but she does stand and look.

i seldom dare write about art. and if the work makes a deep impact it gets harder. vasudha's self portraits are large, overwhelming. she sits crosslegged , staring back, on a pyre. she is seated on a couch, a tiger at her feet.( an earlier work, not in this show). hair cut short, she is swimming, barely able to keep herself above the choppy waters. these works are deeply resonant of the interiority of the artist, yet it continues to speak to the world outside.

i have been deeply uncomfortable with 'personal' films, writing, paintings etc and all the more of adding the 'self' to a narrative. ( which is why this blog remains a wonder- i guess i feel like writing about sanah takes away from my self) and yet amongst my favourite works address these very preoccupations.

to come back to sanah in the city. the white stark space, with numerous niches, that is the new sakshi, was a source of great delight for her.

and then the boats at gateway. and the horses. the dinner at sundance was tedious.

fast asleep by the time we boarded the borivali fast at ten, she suffered the crowded heat of the second class general compartment.

a very very pretty girl, with her fiance and mother, sat in front of us, suffering the heat as well.
they were the audience to sleeping sanah. she must have sensed it, or the heat did it- but at bandra this girl was wide awake, ready to regale her audience. now i could look, unabashed at the pretty girl, so much in love. until bandra i stole glances at the besotted couple sneaking a smile while the mother looked out. but now that they were looking/chirping to my daughter, i could look on at them. they were magical. sanah was just the excuse for them to continue wooing each other.

and sleep was the last thing on sanah's mind, even at 11pm, at kandivali station. and with the mad father she has- they stood on the shaky kandivali overbridge until 11.30 clapping wildly at every train that passed under them. sanah and g thrilling over the speeding trains rattling under their feet. and at the other end, a depressed drunk, leaned dangerously at the railing, watching the whizzing trains.


Space Bar said...

ah...i love the thought of g standing on the bridge with sanah and getting buzzed with every train that passes by! lovely post...and the blogroll's easier on the eye!

sonal said...

blog looking lovelier and lovelier

The Mad Momma said...

I love the father and daughter cheering the trains bit.. its something the brat and OA would do...

and again.. i applaud the bravery .. braving crowded locals again and again.. though i suppose if you live in bombay its just something you learn to live wiht. and is that really you in the black and white?!

SUR NOTES said...

thanks sonal, thanks space bar.

no TMMM, that is not me - just me making a corny attempt at a joke.(sorry)i like that photo of devika rani and i look nothing like that!