Friday, February 26, 2010

Kahlil Gibran - Stories

THE WANDERER


I met him at the crossroads, a man with but a cloak and a staff, and a veil of pain upon his face. And we greeted one another, and I said to him, “Come to my house and be my guest.”

And he came.

My wife and my children met us at the threshold, and he smiled at them, and they loved his coming.

Then we all sat together at the board and we were happy with the man for there was a silence and a mystery in him.

And after supper we gathered to the fire and I asked him about his wanderings.

He told us many a tale that night and also the next day, but what I now record was born out of the bitterness of his days though he himself was kindly, and these tales are of the dust and patience of his road.

And when he left us after three days we did not feel that a guest had departed but rather that one of us was still out in the garden and had not yet come in.


వాండరర్

ఒక దుప్పటీ, చేతికర్రా మాత్రమే ఉన్న ఆ మనిషిని నేను నాలుగు దారులు కలిసేచోట కలిసాను. ఒకరికొకరం నమస్కారం చేసుకున్నాము. ‘మా యింటికి రండి. ఆతిథ్యం స్వీకరించండి’ అన్నాను నేను.

అతను వచ్చాడు.

నా భార్యా పిల్లలు ఇంటి ముందే కనిపించారు. అతను వారిని చూచి చిరునవ్వాడు. అతను రావడం వాళ్లందరికీ భాగనిపించింది.

అంతా కలిసి బల్ల ముందు కూచున్నాము. మాకందరికీ సంతోషంగా ఉంది. ఎందుకంటే అతనిలో నిశ్శబ్దం, రహస్యమయతత్వం ఉన్నాయి మరి.

భోజనం తర్వాత అందరమూ నెగడు ముందు చేరాము. నేనతడిని తన ప్రయాణాల గురించి అడిగాను.

అతను ఆ రాత్రీ, మరురోజూ మాకెన్నో కథలు చెప్పాడు. అతని బతుకులోని చేదుతనం వల్ల నాకిప్పుడీ భావం కలిగింది. అతను మాత్రం దయగల మనిషే. ఆ కథలన్నీ అతని దారిలోని దుమ్మూ, ఓపికలేనని నాకనిపిస్తుంది.

మూడురోజుల తర్వాత అతను వెళ్లిపోయాడు. బంధువెవరో వెళ్లిపోయినట్టు అనిపించలేదు మాకు. మాలోని ఒక మనిషి బయట తోటలో ఉన్నాడు, ఇంకా లోనికి రాలేదు అన్నట్లుంది.

________________________________________

GARMENTS

Upon a day Beauty and Ugliness met on the shore of a sea. And they said to one another, “Let us bathe in the sea.”

Then they disrobed and swam in the waters. And after a while Ugliness came back to shore and garmented himself with the garments of Beauty and walked away.

And Beauty too came out of the sea, and found not her raiment, and she was too shy to be naked, therefore she dressed herself with the raiment of Ugliness. And Beauty walked her way.

And to this very day men and women mistake the one for the other.

Yet some there are who have beheld the face of Beauty, and they know her notwithstanding her garments. And some there be who know the face of Ugliness, and the cloth conceals him not from their eyes.

దుస్తులు

ఒకరోజున అందం, అనాకారితనం సముద్రపు ఒడ్డున కలిశాయి. సముద్రంలో స్నానం చేద్దాం అని అనుకున్నాయి.

అప్పుడిక గుడ్డలు వదిలి నీటిలో ఈదులాడాయి. కొంతసేపు తర్వాత అనాకారితనం ఒడ్డుకు వచ్చేసింది. అందం దుస్తులను తాను వేసుకుని వెళ్లిపోయింది.

అందంకూడా సముద్రంలోనుంచి బయటకు వచ్చింది. ఆమె దుస్తులు కనిపించలేదు. గుడ్డలులేకుండా ఉండడానికి సిగ్గుపడింది. అందుకే, అనాకారి బట్టలను తాను వేసుకున్నది. అలా, ఇక అందం తనదారిన పోయింది.

అందుకే ఇవాళటికీ, ఆడా మగా అందరూ, వాళ్లిద్దరినీ సరిగా గుర్తించలేక పోతున్నారు.

అందం ముఖం చూచి, వేసుకున్న గుడ్డలు ఎట్లున్నా ఆమెను గుర్తించే వారు కొందరున్నారు. కొందరికి అనాకారి ముఖం తెలుసు. ఆ అందమయిన దుస్తులు వాళ్ల కళ్లను మోసగించజాలవు.

For many such stories, visit my home pages at http://vijagopalk.tripod.com/
 
You also have the translated version of "Sand and Foam" of of Kahlil Gibran there.
 
Let us enjoy the works that make us think!
!!!!!!!

A question - Upanishads

ఉపనిషత్తులంటే ఏమిటి? వాటిలో ఏముంటుంది?


కొన్ని దశాబ్దాల కింద మనదేశంలో ‘బేసిక్ విద్య’ అనే పద్ధతి ఉండేది. ఆ పద్ధతికింద చదువులు నడిచే బడిలో పొద్దునా, సాయంత్రం, ప్రార్థనలు ఉండేవి. అందులో అన్ని మతాల గ్రంధాలనుంచి తీసిన ప్రార్థనలూ ఉండేవి. వాటిలో భాగంగనే సహనావవతు అని మొదలయే మంత్రం ఒకటి ఉండేది. అది, చదువులకు కూచునే ముందు గురుశిష్యులు, తమ చర్చ పనికివచ్చేదిగా సాగాలని, అభిప్రాయభేదాలు రాగూడదని చేసే ప్రార్థన. అది తైత్తిరీయం అనే ఉపనిషత్తునుంచి తీసింది. (దాన్నేదో మంత్రంగా చదవడం తప్ప, చెప్పిన వాళ్లకూ, అప్పజెప్పినవాళ్లకూ ఎవరికీ దాని అర్థం తెలిసిందిలేదు. అది వేరే సంగతి!)

వేదాలు నాలుగని అందరికి తెలిసే ఉంటుంది. వాటిలో ఏముందనే సంగతి కొందరికి తెలిసి ఉంటుంది. వేదాలు విస్తారమయినవి. ఆనాటి చదువు గొప్ప సంప్రదాయం గలది. ఒక విషయం నేర్చుకున్న తర్వాత, అందులోని అనుమానాలను శిష్యులు అడిగితే, గురువులు వాటికి వివరణ చెప్పేవారు. వేదాల చివరలోనూ అదే జరిగింది. అదే వేదాంతం. అంటే వేదాల చివరి భాగం. వాటికే ఉపనిషత్తులనికూడా పేరు.

ఉపనిషత్తులు మొత్తం నూటయెనిమిది ఉన్నాయంటే, వేదాలను గురించిన చర్చ ఎంత విస్తారంగా జరిగిందో అర్థం చేసుకోవచ్చు. అన్నింటిలోకీ, ఈశ, కేన, కఠ, ప్రశ్న, ముండక, మాండూక్య, తైత్తిరీయ, ఐతరేయ, ఛాందోగ్య, మొదలయినలవి ముఖ్యమయినవి. ఆదిశంకరుల మొదలు మహామహులెందరో వీటికి వ్యాఖ్యానాలు చేశారు. ఉపనిషద్ అంటే దగ్గరగా చేర్చి, అనుమానం తొలగించడమని భావం.

ఇంకా తెలుసుకోవాలన్న కోరిక గల వ్యక్తిని బ్రహ్మత్వానికి దగ్గరగా చేర్చడం ఉపనిషత్తుల ఉద్దేశ్యం. బ్రహ్మ అంటే ఇక్కడ నాలుగు తలల బ్రహ్మకాదు. హిందూతత్వం ప్రకారం, అసలైన సత్యానికి పరబ్రహ్మమని పేరు. అనాదిగా ఆ నిజాన్ని అర్థంచేసుకోవడమే తాత్వికుల కృషికి లక్ష్యం. బ్రహ్మగురించి తెలిసినవారికి, తమగురించి తమకు తెలుస్తుందని, అందుకు గురువు కేవలం దారి మాత్రమే చూపగలడని, తర్వాత విద్యార్థిదే బాధ్యత అనీ, హైందవం బోధించింది.

వేదాల్లో మనిషి బ్రతుకుగురించి, ధర్మం గురించి చెప్పబడింది. ధర్మం రకరకాలుగా ఉంటుంది. అందులో కొంత పని. కొంత ఆలోచన. వీటి ఆలోచనే వేదాంతం.

What are Upanishads and what is their content?

A few of decades back our schools followed a method called ‘Basic Education.’ In the schools that followed the system, there would be a prayer meeting both in the morning and evening. Extracts from all religious denominations would form part of that prayer. There was a mantra which goes ‘Sahanavavatu’ as a part of that prayer. It was a mantra recited by the teacher and the taught before they commence a session of education. They pray that their session should be useful and there should not be any differences of opinions during it. It is a part of the Upanishad called Taittireeyam. (That people who recited it and those who made them recite it never knew the purport of the mantra is another matter!)

Many would know that Vedas are four in number. Their content is known to only a few. Vedas are vast in their extent. The education of the time had a hoary tradition. Once a lesson is over, the students would ask questions regarding the topic and teachers would clear the doubts as a ceremony perhaps. The same happened at the end of the Vedas too. That is what is called as Vedanta or the end of Vedas. The other name for the knowledge thus put together is known as Upanishads.

One can imagine the extent of discussion that took place on Vedas when one comes to know that there are in all 108 Upanishads. Of them, Isha, Kena, Katha, Prasna, Mundaka, Mandukya, Taittireeya etc are of prime importance. Starting from Adi Shankara many a scholar made commentaries on them to continue the discussion. The term Upanishad stands for bringing near and clears the doubts.

The aim of the Upanishads is to take the inquisitive to the nearest point to the Brahman. Brahman here is not the one with the four faces known to be in charge of creation as per mythology. Indian philosophy recognizes the ultimate truth as the Parabrahman. Philosophers spent all their time from time immemorial to reach this understanding. If one gets to know Brahman, one also gets know the self, is the belief. That a preceptor can only show the way towards this truth and the rest depends totally on the inquirer is also the said in Hinduism.

Vedas contain knowledge about human life and Dharma. This Dharma is of various kinds. Work nad thought also are the parts of it. The discussion about work and thought is the Vedanta!

Let us enjoy wisdom!
!!!!!!!

BNSuresh - Flute - Old Disc

Sri B N Suresh was an exceptionally good flautist.
I remember to have seen him in a wheel chair.
He was a handsome man.
With his hairstyle, he was also an attractive man.

Here is some information about this wonderful artist.

B N Suresh
The tonal quality of his flute reminds one of Chembai Vaidyanatha Bhagavatar’s voice. Suresh, who died of of Liver Cancer at the relatively young age of 44 in 1990, was very well known in Karnataka but was only selectively known outside (Sudha Raghunathan, the vocalist lists him as one of her favorite instrumentalists along with S Balachander and Chitti Babu).


As far as I am aware, his discography consists of just 2 albums – one which has an excellent Hemavathi (”Sri Kanthimatim” of Muthuswami Dikshitar) and a sweet “Kanjadalayatakshi” in Kamala Manohari (also by Dixitar), among others (HMV STHVS 56903). He is accompanied by Lalgudi Jayaraman, Vellore Ramabhadran, and Bangalore Venkataram. This is a must have. The other album is of Purandaradasa’s kritis accompanied by Mysore Manjunath (Violin), Praveen (Mridangam), Bangalore Venkataram (Ghatam), and HP Ramachar (Kanjira). If you are aware of other albums by him, please let me know. I wish All India Radio releases his radio concerts from its archives.

(The recording being presented here is an addition to what is mentioned above.)Suresh’s style was characterized by strong, clean, and clear tone without any hiss and an incredible control over laya (you can time him with a stopwatch – I have seen him in concerts become irritated with the mridangist or the violinist if they tended to speed up or slow down – he would put down his flute and start keeping the tala!). Like Mali, he also used a high pitched flute (5-kattai) believing that it was only when the flute was played at 4 or 5 kattai, that its sweetness, beauty, and clarity came through. His style (bani) was his own, having taken lessons on the flute only for a short while – he admired Mali and was influenced by him but did not try aping his style. His guru, I believe, was the Ghatam/ Mridangam player, Bangalore Venkataram who taught him by singing and having Suresh vocalize on the flute. He has also said that he was influenced by the Alathur brothers.


This is a slightly edited version from a source on the net.

Here we have a beautiful collection of items from one of Suresh's disc.

Items:

01-Viriboni_Varnam-Bharavi.mp3
02-Darini_Telusukonti-Suddha_Saveri.mp3
03-Shanmukhapriya_Ragam_Tanam.mp3
04-Pallavi-Shanmukhapriya.mp3

Link:

http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=10f3f26dc390f408ab1eab3e9fa335ca6d0d1d9114265088

Let us enjoy good music.
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Manamu Leda - A Kriti of Tyagaraja

There are quite a few kritis with the word 'manamu' in the pallavi.

They may not all be of Tyagaraja.
Let us listen to some these songs.

First one is Tyagraja’s “manamu leda?”

You can see that the complete word Abhimamanamu gives the meaning to the pallavi.
Then, do we refer to this song as “Abhimanamu leda?”
Same is the case with “manamu kavalenu talli.”
The word in fact is “Abhimanamu kavalenu talli.”
“Abhimanamennadu galgura” is, as we can see, different.

Let us start with manamuleda.

mAnamu lEdA-hamIrkalyANi

In the kRti ‘mAnamu lEdA’ – rAga hamIr kalyANi, srI tyAgarAja asks

Lord whether He doesn’t have affection that he is His devotee.


P mAnamu lEdA tanavAD(a)ni abhi(mAnamu)
మానము లేదా తనవాడని అభి(మానము)


A kAnamurA nI vale nir-mOhini
కానమురా నీవలె నిర్మోహిని
gAna ruci teliyu kusa lava janaka (mAnamu)
గానరుచి తెలియు కుశలవ జనక (మానము)


C nI samukhamuna ravi tanayuDu ninu
నీ సముఖమున రవితనయుడు నిను
bAsalu palkaga rOsamutO
బాసలు పల్కగ రోసముతో
simhAsan(A)dhipati jEsina nIku
సింహాసనాధిపతి జేసిన నీకు
dAsuDaina tyAgarAja kar(A)rcita (mAnamu)
దాసుడైన త్యగరాజ కరార్చిత (మానము)

Gist


O Father of kusa and lava who knows the taste of music! O Lord worshipped by the hand of this tyAgarAja - Your devotee!


Don’t you have shame? Don’t You have affection that I am Your’s?


We do not see a person so bereft of all affections like You.


Don’t You have shame who, when sugrIva spoke harsh words about You in Your presence, out of indignation, made him King of kiSkindA?

Listen nad enjoy three tracks of this song!






Let us enjoy good music.
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Kamala Thiagarajan

Sri Thiagarajan is a great man.
He has become a part of my self!
I hardly know him.
I am yet to see him physically.
But, we converse frequently!

He is a musical soul!
The collection of his music is mind boggling!
He readily shared it with me and the world!

More than that he shared his thoughts with me.
This made me humbler than ever.
The art of defying age is his strength.
Muisc is his companion at the evening of his life.
I have benefitted a lot musically and mentally because of him.
Sri Thiagarajan's love for his departed wife is an example to learn from.
Late Smt Kamala Thiagarajan was a good Veena artist.
I can vouch, they were a loving couple.
Sri Thiagarajan is as passionate about music as he is about his musician wife.

Here is a write up about her.


Kamala Thiagarajan


Born on 9.12.1922 in Palamarneri,Tanjore district, she was the great grand daughter of Nemam Natesa Bhagavathar, a disciple of Tyagaraja. She had her first lessons in music from her mother, Lakshmi who was a disciple of Wallajapet Venkataramana Bagavathar and in veena from Veerayya followed then from Devakottai Narayana Iyengar. She had the privilege to attend the veena recitals of Veena Dhanammal in Linghi Chetti street, George town. She became a student of Sesha Iyengar, along with V.V.Satagopan. She had the guidance of masters of music of her time, including Maharajapuram Viswanatha iyer, Kunnakkudi Venkatarama iyer, GNB, and MSS. Later in life she learnt music from Madurai Mani Iyer for over a year. In Calcutta she came under A. T. Kanan for over a couple of years in Hindustani music .

She took a diploma in Indian music from the University of Madras under Vidwan Ponnaiya Pillai.

She was a casual artist on veena and broadcast programmes from 1934 from the corporation of Madras and then the All India radio. for over 6 decades when she quit as an A grade artist. She gave concerts in Chennai including some under the auspices of Ial Isai Sangam of Tamilnadu in 1967and in Calcutta including Tansen Sangeet Sammelan.

She was a resident of Mylapore for over 60 years and she lived along with her sister Dr. Miss R. Ambujam in 39/53/68 Alamelumangapuram, Mylapore. On the demise of Dr. Ambujam in 2005, she shifted to Appu st Second lane for a short time and finally moved to a senior citizens home in SSM Residency in Perungalattur, a suburb of chennai.

Kamala Thiagarajan (85) expired at 5.30 pm on 11.10.08 in SSM Residency, in Perungalattur a suburb of chennai.


She leaves behind her husband R. Thiagarajan (ex GSI) and T. Viswanathan, ex Chevron, USA.


R,Thiagarajan can be contacted over telephone no 2279 2355 or e mail thiagu1919@yahoo.co.in

Here is the link to her website where you can find some recordings of her concerts.
 
http://www.kamalaveena.com/
 
More of her recordings at
 
http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=10f3f26dc390f40895af63b7d44918aab9b2cfe22b0f0385
 
Some more concerts are also available on http://www.sangeethapriya.org/ in featured concerts section.

Concerts are also avaialable at the following address.

http://www.esnips.com/web/KamalaThiagarajansVeena
 
Let us enjoy good music.

Tao te ching by Lao Tsu


Some say that my teaching is nonsense.


నా బోధనల్లో అర్థం లేదంటారు కొందరు

Others call it lofty but impractical.

మరి కొందరు గొప్పగా ఉంది కానీ పనికి రావంటారు.

But to those who have looked inside themselves, this nonsense makes perfect sense.

కానీ, తమలోకి తాము తొంగి చూడగలిగిన వారికి మాత్రం, ఈ అర్థంలేని సంగతుల అర్థాలు తెలుస్తాయి.

And to those who put it into practice, this loftiness has roots that go deep.

ఇక వాటిని ఆచరణలో పెట్టినవారికి, ఈ ఔన్నత్యం వేళ్లు మరింత లోతయినవి.

I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion.

These three are your greatest treasures.

నేను చెప్పేవి మూడే పాఠాలు. సింప్లిసిటీ, ఓపిక, ప్రేమ. మూడున్నూ మీకు గొప్ప నిధులువుతాయి.

Simple in actions and in thoughts, you return to the source of being.

పనుల్లోనూ, ఆలోచనల్లోనూ సింప్లిసిటీ ఉంటే మీరు అస్తిత్వపు మూలాలకు చేరుకుంటారు.

Patient with both friends and enemies, you accord with the way things are.

మిత్రులూ, శత్రువులతోనూ ఓపికగా ఉంటే, విషయాలున్న పరిస్థితి మీకు అర్థమవుతుంది.

Compassionate toward yourself, you reconcile all beings in the world.

ఇక మీ మీద మీకే ప్రేమ ఉంటే, ప్రపంచంలోని అన్ని జీవుల మీదా మీకు ప్రేమ ఉంటుంది. సర్దుకు పోగలుగుతారు.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Words of Wisdom

(Click to see the image bigger)

Integrity

Even when money is gone and friends are gone, integrity stays.

People will remember you because of what you are and not what you have. A good man will be remembered because of his integrity. This is not something that comes because of the money you have or the people around you. The inherent character called integrity stays with you for ever.
****
Integrity speaks

Your ideal is what you wish you are,
Your reputation is what people say you are,
Integrity is what you are!

You will like a particular person and would like to live and act like him or her. It is the people who can tell what exactly you are. It is what you say and do irrespective of the fact whether anyone is watching you or not.
****
What is integrity?

The message of a man’s real character is what he would do, if he would never be found out.

You find a coin on the road. There is no one watching you. No one will know what you did with that coin. What will you do with it?
****
The World

The mind is the body’s physician.


The world around us springs out of our imagination. A fearful mind creates a fearful world. A happy and healthy mind in contrast, will create a world filled with peace, joy and love. No adversity can block a happy mind. Everything around it is seen as a teaching tool.

****

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Kabir Bhajan - A haunting song!


Nirbhay Nirgun – Kumar Gandharva


I have a few songs that ring in my mind always.
Father bought a transistor when I was in school perhaps.
That was an assembled set.
It was so good that it used to pick up a number of stations even in AM.
Happily we were in our village without any kind of disturbance.
I don’t remember whether it was Raipur or some such station from which I heard this song.
I always wanted to listen to this song again.
I think the Panchrangi Karyakram Vividh Bharati Played it again.

I could never listen to the song again.
It was always haunting me though!
Now, I found it.

When you find something so good, you share it with others!
Right!
Here it is!!


This is a Kabir Bhajan. Sung by my favourite singer Pandit Kumar Gandharva.

nirbhay nirguN guN re gAvUngA
mUl kamal draDh Asan bandhujIu
ulTi pavan caDavUngA

man mamtA kO thir kar lAvUnjI
pancO taT milAvUnga
ingala pingala sukhman nadijI
tirvENi pE haun nahAvUngaA

panc paccIsOn pakaD mangAvUnjI
Ek hI dOr lagAUungA
shUnya shikhar par anhad bAjEjI
rAg chattIs sunAvUngA

kahat kabIr sunO bhayi sAdhOjI
jIt nishAn ghurAvUngA

http://www.4shared.com/file/223869652/3144ea/Nirbahy_Nirgun_Gun_Re.html



Let us enjoy great songs!!
****

Sumati Satakam - Padyam



కనకపు సింహాసనమున
శునకము గూర్చుండ బెట్టి శుభలగ్నమునం
దొనరగ బట్టము గట్టిన
వెనుకటి గుణమేల మాను వినురా సుమతీ

kanakapu simhAsanamuna
shunakamu gUrchund betti shubhalagnamunan
donaraga pattamu gattina
Venukati gunamEla mAnu vinurA sumatI

కనకపు = golden
సింహాసనమున = on the throne
శునకము = dog
కూర్చుండ బెట్టి = made to sit
శుభలగ్నమునందు = on an auspicious moment
ఒనరగ = to suit
పట్టము గట్టిన = perform incarnation
వెనుకటి = olden
గుణము = character
ఏల = why
మాను = will stop
వినురా = listen
సుమతీ = Oh! The wise one

Meaning

Oh the wise one! On an auspicious occasion, you can make a dog to sit on the throne and make it the king. But, because of that, the dog cannot change its old habits. Please listen.

Each thing and living being has its own characteristics. It is natural. Sugar being sweet and salt being salty is natural. Water is fluid and ice is solid. They have to be like that. A dog will be a dog and a cat will be a cat. They would not change. Man after all is a man. But, interestingly the characters of each one are different. They are either good or bad. Sometimes good and sometimes bad. A naturally wile person will never become a virtuous one overnight. A good man will not turn villain either easily. Hence, we have to deal with people after learning about their nature. Simply because people change place or face, they cannot become someone else.

Let us enjoy classical wisdom!!
&&&&&&&&&

Samala Sadasiva - Swara Layalu

“Now, I will go and have my tiffin” said he and hanged the phone.

He knows what he is doing.

I wanted to talk to him more.
Because he is not able to write his famous letters.
I wrote a letter and followed up with a phone call.
If Dr. Sadsiva writes a letter, it would be an essay on the topic of that day.
Never any non sense in them.
Even within those few minutes we spoke the other day, he told about Carnatic music, NCVasantkokilam and whole lot of things.
Gireesham in Kanyasulkam says talking to him itself is education.
But, talking to people of the stature of Dr. Sadasiva is real education.
Dr Sadasiva is a man of a special kind.
If anything good came about from my working at Adilabad, it is my acquaintance with Sri Sadasiva.
The next thing is my increased aversion to my job.
Both are turning points in my life.

Sadasiva garu would send word that he wants me to go to his place.

I quietly walk in. the place is like an ashram. Most of the times we spent time in the open garden outside only. Even most of the eating happened there only. He would ask for Alu Poha to be made when I visited. I must have told him that I liked it. One of the occasions when the dish was to be served, he asked it to be delayed. He noticed that there is not enough Dhaniya leaves to go with it! He made someone go out and bring it in time!

He knows what he does!

We discuss literature, music and all kind of things till late in the night.
Then, he would offer to escort me back to my place. I would say, I shall see you back at your place and we shall keep going one place to the other throughout the night!
Laughing, he would come up till the turning in the path and we depart.
I always cherished the time thus spent.
I must have been one of the many who have such experiences.

He has never tried to publish a book by himself. Friends made it to happen.
This book also has come out in the same fashion.
This is the second time he mentioned me in his works, this time in the opening notes of the book.
He started my introduction. I am sure what is printed is not exactly what he wanted to tell.
I know he wanted to tell certain things, but did not.
Sri Sadasiva has a lot of love for me. I understand him and don’t mind his half done reference.
When we spoke on phone later, he told that I am responsible for his writing activity being resumed.
I really don’t remember how!
I must have done something that only he remembers.

(The lady on the cover page is Vidushi Hirabai Barodekar)
This book “Swara Layalu” is about Hindustani music, his passion after literature.
He has written a lot already on the topic and this is a welcome addition.
My first reaction when reading the book was, If there could be a book with so many details about North Indian Music in Telugu, why not one on Carnatic music?

That is an irrelevant feeling.
Sri Sadasiva is very passionate about Hindustani Music.
He heard the masters. Read about them and even researched them.
And then, he wrote these articles.
They are worth reading.
How does he remember so many people and so many things about them?
At places, I felt the details perhaps overshadow the musical part!
But, I realise the feelings of the writer towards the artists and his urge to express himself.

People with any bit of interest in culture and music in particular should be reading this book.
My good friend Vedakumar published this book from his Chelimi Foundation.
Navodaya are distributing the same.
Let us enjoy good books!
%%%%%%%

Kapu Rajaiah - Sketches

Once again, I have the pleasure of bringing some wonderful works of Sri Kapu Rajaiah Garu.
This time, they are his sketches!
You can witness the economy of lines and the expressions etc, caught in them.
I will desist from writing a lot and leave it for you.


విశ్రాంతి (1966)


పసిబిడ్డ తల్లి - కొమరవెల్లి జాతర (1989)


ఒక మహారాజు - తంజావూరు - కుడ్యచిత్రం (1987)

A write up about Rajaiah Garu by Sri A S Raman is also here.




                                                                                            పల్లెపడుచు - కొమరవెల్లి జాతర - (1989)
Let us enjoy good works of arts!
$$$$$$$$$$

Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer

Semmangudi Sri Srinivasa Iyer, usually called the Pitamaha was a giant of a musician.

Yet, he was simple.

I saw him sit in the front row of the Chennai music academy hall with his monkey cap on.
May it be a concert of a novice or a senior; he would sit and listen with interest.
People passing would greet him and he would nod.
I also did this and never took courage to talk to him.

That he was the teacher to MSS and TMK with the same intensity bears testimony to his dedication to music.
TMKrishna in one of those radio interviews narrated how Semmangudi calls on phone and asks for Krishnamachar!

How sweet of him!

I am told he learnt some Padams and Javalis from Brinda Amma, but never took courage to sing them when she was around.
That is the hallmark of a discerning artist!


A write up on Semmangudi culled from the net.

Semmangudi has large set of prominent disciples, some of whom did gurukulavāsam, others whom he taught while at the Swati Tirunal Academy and others who took casual lessons with him. His prominent disciples include two Sangeetha Kalānidhi-s: Prof. T. N. Krishnan (who accompanied him on violin in many concerts) and T. M. Thiagarajan. Disciple P. S. Narayanaswamy is a well respected musician and mentor to some of the stars of the current generation. Kallidakurichi S. Harihara Iyer had a long association with Semmangudi and also became the Principal of the Swati Tirunal Academy. K. R Kedaranathan is a senior disciple who later became a Professor at the Chembai Music College. Other notable disciples include Palai C. K. Ramachandran, V. Subrahmaniam, Neyatinkara Vasudevan, Trivandram R. S. Mani, Vaigal Gnanaskandan, Parasala Ponnammal and K. Omanakutty. M. S. Subbulakshmi and K. J. Yesudas (a Music College disciple) have also learnt many compositions from Semmangudi. T. M. Krishna had the fortune to receive advanced tuition under Semmangudi for over seven years.


It is interesting to note that later in his career, Semmangudi himself learnt certain compositions from notable musicians such as Ariyakudi, T. Brinda and G. N. Balasubramaniam. He has also learnt to play the veena, which has helped his knowledge of handling gamaka-s and rāga lakshana.


Facets of his music


The music of Semmangudi has a certain magnetism about it. Despite his nasal voice, it is inspiring music that gives the listeners an impression that they too are involved in it. It is imaginative, expressive and extroverted yet sublime. S. V. Seshadri writes ‘Semmangudi has no equal in bringing out the bhāva of a kriti. He communicates the feeling and emotion of the sāhitya with an intensity that has the imprimatur of a personal faith. That is why his music is not merely brilliant but devout and moving.’ In his concerts, he generally has concentrated on krithi-s, neraval and swaram singing rather than elaborate rāga ālāpana-s, which are generally neat and succinct. His exuberant singing of adjacent swara-s in rapid succession is prominent element of his unique style. His disciple, V. Subrahmaniam notes


His style is based on strict adherence to the sarvalaghu –basic rhythm. The swara-s that he renders in the slow tempo would abound in the bhāva of the rāga with all the nuances, gamaka-s and anuswaras. His fast tempo rendition of swaras would rush as the flow of the Ganga in Haridwar, the fastness in no way marring the melody of the bhava-laden rāga packing the fast tempo swara-s with speed, clarity, bhava and easy flow. Sri Semmangudi's kalpanaswara-s would never leave the listener weary. His lengthy fast tempo swara-s without even one elongated note (deergha swara) is unparalleled and it would be no exaggeration to state that Semmangudi is the only maestro to achieve this … Semmangudi always feels that swara singing should not be a mere rhythmic exercise which will tend to rob the music of bhāva. (V. Subrahmaniam, 2001b)


Semmangudi’s repertoire probably consisted of some 800 compositions. He has sung varnams in his concerts on a few occasions but generally chooses to commence with a krithi in Mayamālavagowla or a Ganapathi krithi. Some of his favourite rāga-s included Kalyāni, Kāpi, Sri Ranjani, Kāmbhoji and Kharaharapriya. His renditions of Amba Kamākshi (Bhairavi), Marubalka (Sri Ranjani), Kshinamai (Mukhāri), Chetasree (Dwijawanti), Biranabrova (Kālyāni), Chakkani Rāja and Rāma Nee Samānamevaru (both Kharaharapriya) are memorable. Towards the end of his concert one would eagerly await to hear his emotion-filled rāgamalika viruthams, the Kāpi jāvali, Parlannamāta and Sivan’s Sharavanabhava (Shanmukhapriya).

I have here a concert recording of Semmangudi for your enjoyment!

List of items:

01-Inta_Paraka-Mayamalavagaula
02-Nenendu_Vedakudura-Karnataka_Behagu
03-Balakrishnam-Gopika_Vasantam
04-Ayyappan-Kharaharapriya
05-Ramakatha-Madhyamavati
06-Seetamma_Mayamma-Vasanta
07-Rama_Neevadukonduvo-Kalyani
08-Maulau-Ganga_Slokam-Ragamalika
09-Parulannamata-Kapi
10-Mangalaslokam

Duration: 01:26:31

Size: 79.2 MB

Recording courtesy Sri S Srinivasan, CA, Mumbai

Link:

http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=10f3f26dc390f408ab1eab3e9fa335ca73160b2b1096bada
 
Let us enjoy good music!!
@@@@@@@@

Words of Wisdom

Not that you don't know!
But, because I liked them!

Mere reading such words is of no use.
We must meditate on them, own them if we can.
Only then, the wisdom is of any use.

You may have a library at home.
But, what is it you have in yourself?

Study these few lines!

Present


Each day is a new beginning

We shall see today as new. Nothing from the past is here. It is only we who bring that past into the present day. We do it because we think it defines us. But is it necessary that we keep living the same old life always?

Knowledge

A fool with a tool is still a fool.

You know many things. You never make use of them. You are as good as one who does not know them. Try and make use of the things that you know.

Useful knowledge

What you learn is your teacher’s concern.
What you do with what you learn is your concern.
How useful is your knowledge is society’s concern.
Mere knowledge is nothing but vanity.

Learning has to culminate in some useful exploitation. Knowledge preserved in the brain is waste.

Self awareness

One, who has studied the entire world and not studied the self, has not studied anything.

Worldly wisdom is of no use without knowledge of one’s own strengths and weaknesses. You have to relate yourself with this world. People are different from one another. Unless you know yourself you can not relate to them properly.
########

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

200 and Not Out!


కవిత్వాన్ని కవులే చదువుతరని ఒక వాదం ఉండేది.
ఇప్పుడసలు కవితలు తగ్గిపోయినయని నాకనిపిస్తుంది.
బ్లాగులను మిగిత బ్లాగర్లు మాత్రమే చదువుతరని నన్ను కొందరు హెచ్చరించినరు.
నాఅనుభవం ఇంకొక రకంగ ఉన్నది.
నా బ్లాగుకు రకరకాల వారిని రప్పించే పని నేను చేయాలె.
ప్రపంచంలో చాల మంది, చాల తెలివి గలిగిన వారు గూడ, ఈ ప్రపంచం గురించి తెలువకుండ ఉన్నరంటే అతిశయోక్తి గాదు.
ఇదేదో గొప్ప అని నేనూ అనుకోలేదు.  కాని, ఇందులోని గొప్పదనం మిగతా మీడియాల్లో లేదని మాత్రం చెప్పగలను.
నేను మాత్రం గోడదిక్కు మళ్లి ఈ వర్చువల్ ప్రపంచంలో బతుకుతున్నాను.
ఇందులో తెలుగు తక్కువ. ఉన్న తెలుగులో తెలివి తక్కువ.

మనం రాసింది ఎంత మంది వింటున్నరన్నది రేడియోలో తెలిసేది కాదు.
పత్రికల్లో కనీసం సబెడిటర్లన్న చదువుతున్నరన్న నమ్మకం కలిగేది కాదు.
టెలివిజన్లో రాసింది చాల వరకు పేరు లేకుండనే వచ్చింది.
వాటిని ఎవరు చూస్తున్నరన్న సంగతి పట్టించుకునే ప్రయత్నం కూడ చెయ్యలేదు.
మొదట్లో కాదుగానీ టెలివిజన్ రాత ఎక్కువగ పైసల కొరకు చేసిన కూలి.
అయినా మనసు పెట్టకుండ రాసే పద్ధతి లేదు గనుక అక్కడకూడ రాతలో నా ఆనందం నాకు మిగిలింది.
బొమ్మ చూడకుండ రాసినా, కాకి అంటే కాకి వస్తుంది, పిట్ట అంటే పిట్ట వస్తుంది అన్న మిత్రుణ్ని మరవలేను.

నా వెబ్ సైటును చాలకాలంగ పట్టించుకున్నది లేదు. అయినా చాలమంది వచ్చి చూస్తున్నరని లెక్కలున్నయి.
అందులో నూటికి మించి పేజీలయినయి. కనుక చదివేటందుకు చాలనే ఉన్నదక్కడ.

ఇంక ఈ వెర్రిబ్లాగుల వ్యవహారం సాగుతున్నది.
ఇదేదో బ్లాగు పడదమని చేస్తున్న పనే గాని బాగుపడదమని మాత్రం కాదు.
ఈ బ్లాగులను ఎవరూ చూస్తులేరంటే అబద్ధం. నూర్ల మంది చూస్తున్నరన్నా అబద్ధం.
కడుపులోని సంగతులను కడుపులోనే దాచకుండ బయట పెట్టేటందుకు ఇదొక పద్ధతి.

నిత్యం ఈపేరున చదవాలె. ఇంకేదో పని చేయాలె. అది బాగుంది. కనుక బ్లాగుంది.
కలకాలంగ దాచుకున్న సంగీతాన్ని, పుస్తకాలను, బొమ్మలను, భావాలను పంచుకునేందుకు ఇదొక పద్ధతి.
ఇది బాగుంది. కనుక బ్లాగుంది.

అందరూ బ్లాగుపడాలని, కనీసం ఇటువంటి మసాలా ఉన్న మనుషులన్న బ్లాగు పడాలని ఈ నడుమ అందరినీ పోరుతున్న.
పైస ఖర్చులేకుండ మన సంగతులు ప్రపంచానికి పంచేందుకు ఇంత మంచి పద్ధతి లేదు.
ఇవాళకాకపోతే రేపన్న ఎవరో చూస్తరు.
లేకపోతే పోని. చెప్పదలుచుకున్నది చెప్పినమన్న సంతృప్తి మనకయితే మిగిలింది గద.
కనుకనన్న అందరు ఈ విద్య నేర్చుకోవాలె.
నాకు తెలువకుండనే 200 పోస్టులు అయినయిక్కడ.
బ్లాగు బ్లాగు. లెస్సగనున్నది.

ఇక్కడ చదివేటందుకే గాక వినేందుకు సంగీతం, కంటికింపయిన పెయింటింగులు కూడ ఉన్నయి.
అయితే, ఇంకా ఇంకా వైవిధ్యం కావాలె.
ప్రయత్నం చేసే ఓపికె ఉన్నది. చేస్త.
వచ్చి చూస్తున్న వారందరికి దండాలు. రాని వారికి రెండు దండాలు.

This is the 200th post in my Lokabhiramam, the counter says.
I have consciously made it a bilingual blog.
I am aware that not all people coming here are able to read Telugu.
That is not my intention either.
Telugu papers and magazines write about Telugu people and things Telugu.
Telugu radio and TV always cater to the Telugus with only the content about Telugu.
I am always of the opinion that there should be an exchange of material between language groups.
With the diversity in languages, we Indians do not exactly know, what people of the next state are doing or thinking.
There is no scope and chance to read about the world in Telugu.
We don’t see much content about the world in Telugu and about things Telugu in world media.
I am pleasantly surprised that many non Telugus visit my web pages and blog.
Some of them almost demanded me to make entries in English so that they can also follow what I am trying to bring to the table.

Had I made it an exclusively Telugu blog, I would have attracted many more visitors.
But, there is a hitch. All of them will, invariably, be Telugus. I would be partly at least carrying coals to New Castle.

I am not really worried about numbers.
I could make friends with people from across the globe, both Telugus and others.

I know there has to be better content here. The same stuff will not sustain the blog.
Tell me what you would like me to add!!
I am game!!
I am ready to make the necessary effort to make this a meaningful exercise.
Thanks to those who visited!
Welcome to all those who are yet to come!!

All are my friends! I am only yet to meet some of them!!

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Friday, February 12, 2010

Mysore V Doraiswamy Iyengar - Veena

Interestingly, in my esnips collection, I have found that there are more visitors in the Instrumental music folder than in Vocal.

To listen to Vocal music, perhaps the language, its meaning etc., will also be considered to be adding to the interest. When it is instrumental you can listen to the music for any amount of time, without distraction. On the other hand, if you are listening to instrumental and are also well versed with the lyrical part, you would be looking for the verbal nuances to be reflected in the instrument.

I really don't know the difference. I listen to instrumental as well as I do with vocals.

for the listening pleasure of friends who visit my blog for music, here is an excellent Ragam Tanam and Pallavi on Veena by none other than Sriman Doraiswamy Iyengar.

Doreswamy Iyengar, generally known as Mysore V Doreswamy Iyengar, was born into a family of musicians. His father, Venkatesha Iyengar, was himself a Vainika and a musician in the court of the Maharaja of Mysore.



He started learning the Veena from his father at an early age and soon became the disciple of Veena Venkatagiriyappa one of the foremost Vainikas of the day in Mysore. He gave his first public performance in 1943, in the Bangalore Gayana Samaja. He participated in music conferences including the one in Shiraz, Iran in 1969.


He studied BA in the Maharaja’s College in Mysore. He was the music producer of the All India Radio in Bangalore. The University of Mysore conferred on him an Honorary Doctorate in 1975.


In an age when most of the other Vainikas started using the contact microphone, Doreswamy Iyengar remained a purist and stuck to the ‘acoustic’ Veena. His style of playing is sometimes referred to as the Mysore style. This style is marked by the movements from one note to another, achieved with the playing fingers (the index and middle fingers of the left hand) parted. This, along with his unique style of plucking the strings enabled him to achieve the continuity of sound so essential to Carnatic music.


Normally Veena is a solo instrument and is accompanied only by percussion instruments. However, the concerts of Doreswamy Iyengar accompanied by Mysore T Chowdiah on the violin became very popular. He has participated in many ‘Jugalbandis’ including other famous musicians such as Ali Akbar Khan. He also composed music for dance dramas, especially those of P T Narasimhachar, a renowned poet of Kannada.


His son, D. Balakrishna is among the foremost Vainikas of the day. Another Vainika of note, who was Doreswamy Iyengar’s disciple, was C. Krishnamurthy.



I never had the fortune of listening to his live concerts or talikng to him.
I saw him in Madras Muisc Season.
I am told he was a perfect gentleman of the old style.

Here is the link to my mediafile folder where his music is waiting for you.

http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=10f3f26dc390f408ab1eab3e9fa335cace69c081814054ed

There is a Kmbhoji RTP for almost an hours duration in the folder.

Let us enjoy good music!!
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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Why Does a Human Baby Need a Full Year Before Starting to Walk?

I was teaching transactional analysis as a part of my soft skill trainings.
That is when I realised about the dependency of a human child on the parental care in the initial years.
Even the parents take the matter to such an extent that the child starts feeling that the dependency is natural.
That is the basis of the problem of human relations.
We all want some kind of prop to live on!
Sometimes the prop happens to be mental.

When I was in this kind of thinking, I happened to read the following news item.
It struck me in the face!
I thought I should share it with friends.
I saved it and today is the day when I share it!!


Why does a human baby need a full year before it can start walking, while a newborn foal gets up on its legs almost directly after birth? Scientist have assumed that human motor development is unique because our brain is unusually complex and because it is particularly challenging to walk on two legs. But now a research group at Lund University in Sweden has shown that human babies in fact start walking at the same stage in brain development as most other walking mammals, from small rodents to elephants.


The Lund group consists of neurophysiologists Martin Garwicz and Maria Christensson and developmental psychologist Elia Psouni. Contrary to convention, they used conception and not birth as the starting point of motor development in their comparison between different mammals. This revealed astonishing similarities among species that diverged in evolution as much as 100 million years ago. -- Humans certainly have more brain cells and bigger brains than most other terrestrial mammalian species, but with respect to walking, brain development appears to be similar for us and other mammals. Our study demonstrates that the difference is quantitative, not qualitative, says Martin Garwicz.


Based on knowledge about development in other mammals it is therefore possible to actually predict with high precision when human babies will start to walk. This is a very unexpected and provocative finding.


The notion that humans have a unique position among mammals is not only deeply rooted among lay people, but is also reflected in fundamental assumptions in different research fields related to human development and human brain evolution.


"Our study strongly contradicts this assumption and thereby sheds new light on theories in, for instance, evolutionary and developmental biology," says Martin Garwicz. "On the other hand, our findings fit well with the substantial similarities between the genomes of different mammals. Perhaps these similarities are after all not that surprising -- although the end products 'human' and 'rat' may be very different, our study suggests that the building blocks and principles for how these building blocks interact with one another during development could be the same."


The study originated in an attempt by the group to translate behavioral milestones of motor development between two distantly related species. The similarities in relative developmental time courses between the two species were so striking that the scientists started to wonder whether the regularity applied to other mammals and ultimately also to humans.


The Lund group has now compared 24 species, which together represent the majority of existing walking mammals. Some, like the great apes, are closely related to us evolutionarily while others, such as rodents, hoofed animals, and elephants, diverged from our evolutionary path about 90-100 million years ago.


Despite this, and regardless of differences in various species' brain and body size, gestation time, and brain maturity at birth, the comparison shows that the young from all species start walking at the same relative time point in brain development. Humans may be unique, but not in this particular way. When the nervous system has reached a given level of maturity, you learn to walk, whether you are a hedgehog, a foal, or a human baby...

Science is really interesting. More than anything else!!
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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Ammangi Venugopal - Poetry


Sri Venugopal is a passionate person.
He takes up any work with all the zeal and zest.
He is a friend of mine long time.
I am not writimgabout him because he is a friend.
He is a crusader of sorts when he takes a thing to his heart.

We all feel strongly about many things.
When it comes to action usually we slog!

I remember his writing to AIR about use of Telangana dialect for unintelligent roles only in thier dramas.
This trend was rampant at that time.
Telangana dialect was being ridiculed without let up.
There was a serious discussion about the matter at AIR and the trend almost stopped.
Unfortunately it continued in films for long.
It went to nauseating proportions at some point of time.
I am sure now, media takes care not to touch the sentiments of people.
There was and still is a trend in films, of showing Telangana people as villains.

We will leave it at that and come back to Venugopal who took it on him to talk about the matter when none did.

Later he wrote some good radio plays.
It shows that radio people took his point in the right spirit.
Sri Venugopal participated in the National Symposium of Poets conducted every year by the AIR.
His poem was well received at that time.
I remember it was about a tree.


Venugopal in fact researched about novel.
His doctoral thesis is about Gopichand as a novelist.

I really don't know if Venugopal wrote any novels.
He wrote some good poetry.
There is an environmentalist and a villager in him.
Venugopal's collection of poems is titled "Paccha bottu - Patancheru"

There are some poems about environment and villagers in it.
Though it is a small collection, the contents are forceful.
Here is one poem from the book.



The first few lines of the poem in English!
(Translation is mine)

The blood sharpened crescent moon
While showering red light in the old city
Dust raised by the wheels of the chariot
When burning the hues of dusk in the eyes
Even without having a last look at their buring houses
Burying the dead bodies of the dear ones in the cemetry called memories
Cursing the God, wailing every moment
They are going away crossing the bridge

Let us enjoy good works and words!!
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Monday, February 8, 2010

Surya Prakash - Paintings

That was way back in 80,s.
Inauguration of Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology was the occassion.
True to his style Dr Bhargava put up a big show, both scientifc and artistic.
The seminar went on for 21 days.
There were Nobel Laureates and also painters like Maqbool Fida Hussain, Pakala Tirumala Reddy, writers like Vikram seth and many more people from the creative fields.
That is where I met Charles Correa.
That is where I met Surya Prakash too.

MFHussain was to make a mural in the premises.'He spent a lot of time meditating on it.
We all sat in the lawns with him talking.
You can see the half done mural perhaps even today.
We spent time with Hussain talking about various things.
Mural however, was never completed.
He stayed on the campus and made a couple good paintings.
One of them about Mother Teresa, if my memory serves me well.
The paintings are still in the foyer of CCMB.
In fact many famous painters were commissioned to make paintings and they are all there in the foyer even today.

Surya Prakash was appointed as an Artist in House at CCMB.
No other scientific institute did such a thing as appointing artists for arts ake.
He started painting his now famous leaves around that time only.
There was a photographer also on the staff there.
We all were enjoying the fun!!
I was enjoying the science also and interviewed many scientists including Nobel Laureates and  persons like Dr Ephraim Katchalsky, erstwhile President of Israel.
Intelligence people caught hold my equipment after his interview!

Well, the post is about Surya Prakash!
Here are some of his excellent works!

Leaves and Leaves!!


Now, about Surya Prakash

(Click on the images to see them bigger)

This is what Hindu wrote about Surya Prakash

Inside his fifth floor studio, Surya Prakash daubs his canvas with a few pixels of white. In the rich colours of verdancy and vibrancy, the white disappears like a dot but leaves a trace of luminance in the mind’s eye. “This is too dull, let me get something more colourful to work as a background,” he says moving the canvas he is working on and then picking up the third painting in the second stack positioning it as the background. This one recalls a green vista that has long disappeared. But life and canvas of Surya Prakash hasn’t always been the emerald green of spring or flaming orange of spring forest. Years ago it was defined by the blue and blooms in water.


When he opened the doors of his gallery in Srinagar Colony he had a small pond with a few water plants, lilies and lotuses. Visitors would stop, admire and move into the gallery to see the artist’s work with pointillism, but it inspired a major series for Surya Prakash. And from this slice of nature, began his journey into a Monetesque world of colours. A writer dubbed it Pool of Life and it stayed with the artist for nearly 10 years. “I started hating it after a point of time. It was tyranny of demand, people started expecting me to do the same thing. I could not move on to new things. For an artist nothing is worse than absence of creativity and novelty, it is like stopping all exploration,” says Surya Prakash about the series which almost became his calling card.

“And I was stuck with oil colours. To break the tyrannical grip, I tried working with acrylics. I would splay the canvas with acrylics without having any pattern in mind and then I would sit and finish the painting with oil colours. Suddenly, my canvases were much more evocative, the subjects had breathing space as it were,” says the artist pacing the room.

It is this creative experimental mindset that keeps the artist bursting with ideas though he started his journey into art world accidentally, when his art teacher Mahboob Ali took a shine to him in 40s and when he failed to secure admission into any college after finishing his Intermediate. “I was an academically poor student. When I failed to secure admission to any college a friend of my brother suggested School of Fine Arts where I was accepted and I learnt under Vidya Sagar and Jagadish Mittal later I worked under Ram Kumar but I was always inspired by the works of Cezzane, Monet and other artists who did outdoor figurative works,” he says recalling a time when artists hardly had access to the works of major artists. “I wanted to absorb their style and technique but do my own work which I think I am still pursuing,” he says.

Now in the comfort of a studio in the fifth floor of LV Prasad Eye Institute where he works everyday between 10.30 a.m. and 6 p.m. with a lunch break with his wife at their home in Road no. 5 Banjara Hills, Surya Prakash remembers the time when he would pedal to the old city on a bicycle early in the morning with his paint bottles strung around the cycle to stop, sketch and paint. It was during one of these sojourns that he stopped by an old weather-beaten body of a truck which turned into a series on automobiles and his first solo exhibition in 1963, since then he has taken his art and style to many places in the world. “Initially I was seen as an abstract painter. I was very much inspired by western schools of painting. Later I did some portraits and then I moved onto figurative works. Now, my peers would be surprised that I used to do abstracts,” he says.

Now, having moved onto a series that evokes fantastic forests raging with colours and life, he has teamed up with a writer for a biographical walk down his long and eventful life. He shows an old photograph where a lean man with folded hands and slicked back hair stands “I was into abstracts at that point of time. This must have been in 1963. Most of these works are lost as I kept them in Kala Bhavan when I went to Delhi when I came back, they were all gone. All my initial studies and sketches were lost I don’t know their fate but I moved on. Life is about movement and not looking back,” says Surya Prakash summing up his philosophy of life.

Let us enjoy good works of art!
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