More morning ragas

Ayaan Ali Bangash is the Indian equivalent of a rock god. He is young, handsome and plays the sarod, not the electric guitar. Last month, he performed at a Sunday morning concert in the morning raga series, staged at the India Habitat Centre. He was outstanding, the best Indian classical music artist I have seen… Continue reading More morning ragas


Five weeks ago, I marvelled at a collection of masks on display at the India Habitat Centre. Sharmila Sen’s exhibition “Art Beyond Tradition” features ninety masks produced by local craftsmen from Bengal. Her aim is to keep alive the dying art form. The artists use papier mache, terracotta, wood and metal. Most depict characters from… Continue reading Masks

Sitar & Tabla Morning Ragas

Ustad Shujaat Khan is one of the best sitar players in India. Last month, on a crisp Sunday morning, we went to see him perform morning ragas at India Habitat Centre. We arrived just in time to miss the formal introduction and presentation of flowers, and took our seats in the third row on the… Continue reading Sitar & Tabla Morning Ragas

An Exhibition of Whimsical Paintings for Children

An Exhibition of Whimsical Paintings for Children …in the age group 5-90 years, by Nalini Misra Tyabji. I was enchanted by this exhibition at India Habitat Centre last month. Nalini says that she paints happy pictures because the child in her never got a chance to, as a child. She paints cats, owls and more… Continue reading An Exhibition of Whimsical Paintings for Children

There’s no city like Delhi

William Dalrymple at the Times LitFest This weekend the Times of India has arranged a festival of talks about art, politics, music, film and literature at the India Habitat Centre in New Delhi. William Dalrymple is my favourite author at the moment (“City of Djinns” is my bedtime reading). He was scheduled to speak at… Continue reading There’s no city like Delhi


In Gujerat and Rajasthan there are still a few craftsmen who use the ancient traditional Ajrakh technique to make patterned cotton cloth. It is an incredibly complicated and time-consuming business. There are fourteen steps in the process, but basically, it is a reverse block print, with areas of cloth being treated to avoid dye. The… Continue reading Ajrakh