Retrograde. Bamboozlement! More Bamboozlement!

Bollywood Posters by Jerry Pinto and Sheena Sippy

Finally got myself a book with lots of pictures. And some readable lines, here and there. 'Bollywood Posters' (2008) is a meditation on things like significance of gun in a heroine's hand, so obvious: reversal of phallic symbolism and castration, the birth of 'A frame', the poor man's practice of 'optimum' use of space in a hand-painted movie poster where the directions seem to be simple: never leave a curve out, create one where there is none, never leave a knife, a gun, a gun-thing-like-knife, a train, a plane, a gorilla, anything that moves the audience out, squeeze it all in even if it distorts the whole picture, the significance of hero showing his back in a poster, he is standing up against the society, the value of 'action' in North India, the runs, the mills, the coming of photoshop generation, the death of poster art, an art now economically inviable. Here it would be fair to say, given the cost of these fat arty books in India, even appreciating art is economically inviable).  After a 66% discount this beauty only cost me about Rs. 495.

The book is divived in various sections based on various themes in alphabetical order. Like 'F' for fantasy, 'R' for romance. That kind of thing. And in between 250 posters we have Jerry Pinto's passionate prose in praise of the art and the processes that created it.



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3 comments:

  1. Where did you buy this book at discounted price? Is it the same book published by Om Book International?

    ReplyDelete
  2. It was published by Thames & Hudson. Bought it from OM Book Store, Noida. They are having some sort of clearance sale throwing in heavy discounts.

    ReplyDelete
  3. RIP, Maqbool Fida Hussain. 9 June 2011.

    This book does mentions MF Hussain's humble origins in the art of painting film hoardings. How he would paint giant film posters in the dead of the night and on a canvas spread out on a street.

    ReplyDelete

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