India-UK ties grow stronger through the lesser known sides of Satyajit Ray

A talk show accompanied by a series of paintings demonstrated British influences on Ray’s works

author_img Raima Ganguly Published :  21st May 2022 12:00 AM   |   Published :   |  21st May 2022 12:00 AM

Sandip Chaudhuri, Dr. Kunal Sarkar, Rituparna Sengupta and Nick Low

Friday evening witnessed The British High Commission in Kolkata host a talk show organised to commemorate Satyajit Ray on his birth month. The event titled ‘ARRAY- a British Retrospective’ threw light on the filmmaker’s lesser known UK connections. A unique visual perspective through illustrator Sandip Chaudhuri’s eyes added a unique touch to the session. Moderated by Sandip himself, the members of the panel included British Deputy High Commissioner Nick Low alongside cardiologist Dr. Kunal Sarkar and actress Rituparna Sengupta.

“I think the UK and India share a significantly rich and varied connection in fields of art, culture, literature, music, fashion to name a few and this connection continues to evolve. Ray is very much a part of this fabric and has left behind a remarkable legacy that is acknowledged and appreciated in the UK till date. His birth centenary gave us the opportunity to do a much needed retrospective of his genius,” shares Nick. The event was originally planned last year but had to be postponed owing to COVID restrictions.

Sectioned into twelve topics, the panelists drew parallels of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Professor Challenger with Ray’s Professor Shonku. They also widely spoke about the filmmaker’s fascination with time travel and if at all Ray’s Feluda requires a new age facelift.

“When it comes to Satyajit Ray, the obvious connections we make are with the US because of the Oscar and France because of the Legion d’honneur. However, we often overlook how he was thoroughly influenced by the UK right from his formative years. The paintings exhibited here today are all conceptualised from an artist’s eye to denote his continuous creative interaction with the United Kingdom right from his childhood, through all his works,” adds Sandip.