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Kochi becoming an artist’s paradise

Posted on Fri, 12/23/2011 - 19:07 by easytours

With an amalgam of various cultures, Kochi is slowly transforming into the art capital of the state. The city, which is home to 20 art galleries, has become a rising star in India’s art scene.

Dinesh Shenoy, an artist based out of Mattancherry is one of the many artists who abide by this belief. "Kochi has always been open to so many cultures, communities and different types of art. The influences can still be seen in the work of the present day artists," says Shenoy. He now owns a gallery for his paintings, where he sells his works to foreigners and locals alike.

The art scene in Kochi has become more dynamic because of the varied people in the city who turn up for exhibitions, says Bahuleyan, another city-based artist. The 39-year-old artist, who has participated in international exhibitions, including those in Poland and Kuwait, believes that the appreciation for art is much better now. "What we now need to focus on is the marketing of art," he says.

Jayanth, director for Kerala Arts Gallery, believes there is a kind of democracy or equality in art. "From a schoolchild to a retiree, they all come to see, question and understand paintings. There is also a rise in a younger generation of artists, willing to experiment on canvas," says Jayanth.

Art lovers like Mia, a German tourist traveling through Kochi, feel that art in Kerala has something unique about it. "Maybe it's the rich cultural tradition, or the urge to not be type-casted. I feel that art, especially the paintings, are more poignant than their western counterparts. The artists’ stylization is also worth a study," she says.

Delhi festival celebrates the city’s vibrant culture

Posted on Thu, 12/22/2011 - 18:47 by easytours

Dilli Ke PakwanOnce again, Delhi celebrates Dilli Ke Pakwan, a festival which encompasses the full culinary, cultural and historical scope of this vibrant city as well as India as a whole. Replicas of the seven gates of Delhi (including Ajmeri Gate, Turkman Gate and India Gate) greet you as you enter the festival grounds. Many other landmarks are recreated, including Meena Bazaar and the Lotus temple.

A camel struts his stuff.

Posted on Wed, 12/21/2011 - 18:22 by easytours
A camel struts his stuff.

A camel struts his stuff.   Pushkar Camel Fair 2011 Photos

Chennai Music and Dance Festival

Posted on Tue, 12/20/2011 - 19:04 by easytours

Chennai Music and Dance Festival is organized every year during mid-December to mid-January. Throughout the month, renowned artists schedule dance and music performances all over the city. Organized by various sabhas (organizations) in the city, the festival is intended to promote the classical music and classical dances of South India.

The festival began as a way to memorialize the anniversary of Madras Music Academy each December. Gradually, various organizations throughout Chennai joined in, making this one of the most lively and talent-filled festivals in all of India. The city truly comes alive during the festival it has now developed into a cultural extravaganza with more than 2000 participants.

Performances include vocal and instrumental music, as well as solo and group dances. Even upcoming artists get the chance to perform along with well-established artists. The music includes songs in various South Indian languages such as Tamil, Telugu and Kannada accompanied by flutes, veena (a large string instrument), goottuvadyam (similar to veena but without frets), nagaswaram (a pipe), thavil (a percussion instrument), mridangam (a drum), and even ghatam (a mud pot).

Indian Cuisine - Murg ki Kadi

Posted on Mon, 12/19/2011 - 18:26 by easytours

Murgi Ki KadiMurg ki
(An unusual Chicken preparation from the desert, with yogurt and spices).

Recipe by Sumit Sinha, Chef at Taj Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur Utensils: 
1 wok
1 iron griddle
1 small bowl
1 mixing bowl
1 transparent glass serving dish


Boneless chicken – 32 oz. cut into 1” cubes
Asafoetida – a pinch
Green chilies – 0.4 oz.
Cumin seeds – 0.2 oz.
Onion paste – 4 oz.
Coriander - 1 oz.
Garlic paste – 2 oz.
Oil – 6 oz.
Water – 600 ml.

The Yogurt Mixture:
Gram flour – 2 oz.
Yogurt – 16 oz.
Turmeric – 0.2 oz.
Red chili powder – 0.2 oz.
Salt – to taste
Water – 800 ml.

1. Roast half the cumin seeds on a hot iron griddle, cool, put in a grinder and powder.

2. Whisk the yogurt in a bowl; add gram
flour, red chilies, turmeric and salt and mix well. Add 800 ml of water and whisk again. Keep to one side.

3. In a wok heat 2 oz. of oil and cook the onions until soft and light pink in color. Remove wok from the fire and remove onions into a small bowl. Wash, clean and dry the wok for further use.

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