The sad demise of Charles Correa in June has left us bereft. His contribution as India's premier architect and his impact on our landscape is renowned; he was also a leading figure in the international field. Charles's association with Marg has been a long and close one, and he is probably best remembered for initiating the conversation--and idea--for Navi Mumbai along with Shirish Patel and the late Pravina Mehta in a 1965 Marg issue. He was also a major participant in an important book that Marg published this year, Dialogues with Indian Master Architects. As a Trustee of The Marg Foundation he was much valued for his vision and his ability to find relevance for our magazine in a changing world. He will be greatly missed.
This issue of Marg looks at new emerging fields in contemporary art. Colour and its cultural significance, its play on identity and mental states is widely acknowledged. Here, Natasha Eaton discusses the significance of the colour "Blue" and its association with politics and a sinister colonial past. Amit Kumar Jain and Ruhanie Perera explore the emerging field of "Book Art" in the subcontinent. Still in its nascent stage the field is growing as artists look at--and to--books for new interpretations as an art form.
Images of war and conflict from around the world constantly assault us, leaving us numb. The photographs of Baptist Coelho, a mixed-media artist, show a different, more human side of war, exploring the role of the soldier as a vulnerable human rather than a war machine. Janice Pariat discusses his work and how he became engaged with depictions of the frailty of war and its implications. Closer to home, the work of Mumbai-born artist Siona Benjamin is discussed by Ori Soltes. He examines how through it Siona bridges the various worlds she encounters in her life, simultaneously reflecting on her Jewish background and drawing from her experiences.
Kashmir and its artistic contributions to the world are discussed in two essays. The first by Hakim Sameer Hamdani focuses on the Maarak, the original imambada built in Srinagar in the 16th century. Its construction became a symbol of Shi'a identity as the community's troubled history appeared to run parallel with the building's. The second, a review of an exhibition on Buddhist art of Kashmir and its legacies, pays homage to the art of the region from the 7th to 17th centuries.
Roda Ahluwalia writes about a project she participated in, undertaken by the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya and the British Library, to digitally consolidate painted manuscripts whose pages have been separated, largely because of avaricious dealers. The results are available on the web through the software program "Turning the Pages"--a project that other institutions can emulate.
Finally, the thematic ad portfolio celebrates the life of Ebrahim Alkazi, renowned for his contributions to theatre and the visual arts, who turns 90 this year.