Our fascination with ideas, objects and places, both classic and commonplace
An Ode to the Anthology
Words: Aparna Andhare
These books from Marg make for rich bite-sized reading for the festive season
We’ve always loved the freedom an anthology affords. To be able to peruse small but complete texts, to luxuriate in crisp writing, snatching glorious moments of reading pleasure, is sublime. An anthology brings diverse points of view, and slices of the world. It whets your curiosity, and satisfies you too. There’s a strange comfort in knowing you’ll finish what you started in one sitting. You can carry an anthology with you for years, or finish reading it in hours. As a bunch of holidays appear on the calendar, perhaps it’s a good time to find yourself with a collection of essays, reading between meals, meetings, and assorted shenanigans.
The festive season is also a good excuse to focus on India. Literature on the subcontinent can be daunting, but of the many illustrious publication houses set up in modern India, Mulk Raj Anand’s Marg offers a distinguished selection. These are magazines and books about art, culture, architecture, craft and traditions of the Indian subcontinent, with an occasional foray abroad. Content is often eclectic and surprising, as Marg routinely appoints leading professionals to be editors, and each volume has a specialist at the helm. Profuse illustrations and a wide range of topics make Marg publications a must-have for anyone interested in the cultural landscape of India.
We went through Marg’s robust catalogue to curate the list below—each comes with free-standing chapters that you can read quickly, but all are worthy of a spot on your shelf.
20th Century Compulsions: Modern Indian Architecture from the Marg Archives (2016)Edited by Mustansir Dalvi
MARG is an acronym for Modern Architectural Research Group. This book annotates archival essays that reflect on the development of Indian architecture. It’s an important resource for studying this development, and in turn society itself. The anthology has a facsimile of Anand’s manifesto for modern India, along with essays by Patrick Geddes, Le Corbusier, Durga Bajpai, and BV Doshi (among others). While the tone may feel a tad academic, these essays are an opportunity to revisit the philosophy and principles in the creation of independent India, dealing with all its myriad challenges and complexities. | BUYBest for: Design enthusiasts, architecture appreciators
Water Design: Environment and Histories (2016)Edited by Jutta Jain-Neubauer
Wars have been waged over water—it has shaped cities, politics and architecture. This book dives into the history of water and its impact on Indian history, design, architecture and religious practice. Full of interesting tales, it also inspires travel to stepwells, gardens and reservoirs. Noted historians explore the subcontinent through accounts of the harnessing of river flow in Sultanate Delhi, Mughal Emperor Babur’s engagement with water, and the water landscape and traditional water harvesting in Jaipur. Along with its historical treatment of water, the book also pays attention to the engineering involved, as well as the cultural and religious impact with Jain, Buddhist, Hindu and Islamic interventions in cave excavations, temple sites, gardens and palace complexes. | BUYBest for: History buffs, curious travellers, engineers
Rembrandt and the Inspiration of India (2018)Edited by Stephanie Schrader. Published in association with the J. Paul Getty Museum
While books have examined the impact of Europe and the Renaissance on the rest of the world, this volume explores the influence of Mughal art on Rembrandt. The Dutch master artist was interested in the art of the Mughal court, from Shah Jahan to Dara Shukoh’s atelier. The essays contextualise Rembrandt’s engagement with Mughal art, their impact on his practice and the copies he made of the images he saw. The book also looks at the global reach of Mughal artists, who while they’re famous for their finesse, were making copies of Christian imagery. The book is captivating—it juxtaposes Rembrandt and the drawings he was looking at, engendering a fresh look at two of the most glorious periods of history of art! | BUYBest for: Art enthusiasts, history buffs
Scent upon a Southern Breeze (2018)Edited by Kavita Singh
If the poetic title catches your eye, the gorgeous illustrations in the book won’t disappoint either. The book examines the arts of the Deccan, and features some of the finest Deccani paintings from collections across the world. When you get your hands on the book, at first flip through to appreciate its beauty alone. Publishing papers from the 2015 symposium and exhibition Nauras: The Many Arts of the Deccan, which took place in Delhi, the book addresses all your senses. Expect essays on music, art, the role of perfume, textile and object, and one on ceremony, sociality and the history of pleasure. It’s as much a treat for the mind as it is for the eyes. | BUYBest for: Art and design enthusiasts, curious travellers
Aparna Andhare is a curator at a museum in Jaipur and spends all her money on books and coffee. She tweets @a_appy and is on Instagram as @brattybaisaa.
Things to Read: Peppa Pig, Typing in All Caps & More
Stories from around the web that found our fancy
Further Reading via Champaca Bookstore, Library and Café
A cosy new space in Bangalore
Further Reading: For the Rains
A list of recommended reading to lose yourself in while skies heaving with grey clouds threaten the onslaught of a downpour
Further Reading: A Peek at Tarq’s Bookshelf
Hena Kapadia, founder of Tarq, lets us in on her well-catalogued collection
Further Reading: On Nature
A list of recommended reading that brings the living world alive, intertwined with food, natural history, adventure, curiosity and more
Further Reading via Purbasha Sarkar
Web Editor at the Delhi-based May Day Bookstore and LeftWord.com
Further Reading: On Love
Recommended reading on love in all its many forms
Further Reading: A Peek at Pooja Dhingra’s Bookshelf
The Le15 pastry chef speaks about her reading habits and favourite books
Further Reading via Rajni Malhotra, Bahrisons Booksellers
Curator of books at the Delhi store
Navigating the tough terrain of a climber’s mind
Illustrated Books for All!
These titles from Tara Books are beautiful and compelling to read
IN PRAISE OF FLOWERS
Discovering floral flavours and fragrances in places near and afar
THE TALE OF THE ITINERANT CANOPY
Tracing the journey of a marble canopy across Bombay
Travelling through time at Baradari
Jaipur’s City Palace reinvented
Further Reading via Virat Chandhok
Curator of books at Bombay’s Wayword and Wise
2017 Christmas Playlist
Tunes to celebrate Christmas
Introducing The Move Magazine
A UK based quarterly
Introducing Anxy Magazine
Venturing into mental health issues
Introducing Drift Magazine
A New York based biannual magazine
Introducing Lost Magazine
Self-discovery through travel
Boys equal girls
Introducing Science of the Secondary Zine
Issue 1 – Apple
Introducing Curry Magazine
Exploring communities and culture
Introducing Accent Magazine
A photography &lifestyle magazine
Introducing Cereal Magazine - Volume 13
The redesigned CEREAL
Introducing Pasture Magazine
A US based food quarterly
2016 on Instagram
The year in a nutshell
Introducing 212 Magazine
Introducing Concorde Zine
Featuring photo stories from India
Introducing Filmme Fatales Zine
Films and feminism
Introducing Weapons of Reason Issue 3
‘The New Old’
A ‘strong’ collective
Introducing Lunch Lady Magazine
An Australian quarterly
Happy 3rd Anniversary, White Print
White Print completes 3 years
Introducing Weapons of Reason #2
Introducing Sirene Journal
An independent Italian publication
Introducing The Great Discontent Magazine
Introducing MARFA JOURNAL
A biannual publication made by artists for artists.
Introducing Another Escape Magazine
Lifestyle, creative culture and sustainable living.
Introducing MOOD Zine
Music & Food Magazine.
Introducing Holo Magazine
‘Emerging trajectories in art, science and technology’
Introducing Lagom Magazine
A UK based lifestyle magazine
Introducing All-In Magazine
A biannual arts and culture print publication
Introducing Cherry Bombe Magazine
A magazine dedicated to food and women
Introducing FUET Magazine
Food and its peripheries
Introducing Apartamento Magazine
An everyday life interiors magazine
Introducing frankie Magazine
‘Dear frankie’ – Our letter to frankie.
Introducing Kyoorius Magazine
An ode to the creative community
Introducing [Wherever] Magazine
An Out of Place Journal
Introducing Lucky Peach Magazine
A quarterly on food, writing and art.
Introducing The Travel Almanac Magazine
Examination of post-touristic matters
Introducing Perdiz Magazine
“Happiness is Contagious”.
Introducing Dumbo Feather Magazine
Conversations with extraordinary people.
Introducing Avaunt Magazine
Form the makers of PORT
Introducing Four&Sons Magazine
An Australian biannual publication
Introducing Works That Work Magazine
a self-published magazine about creation
This April we did something new again!
A playlist from the best
Introducing It's Nice That Annual 2014
Now Available on our Online Store
Introducing 100% Zine
Where artists doodle and sketch as they wander.
Introducing The Helter Skelter Magazine
Anthology of New Writing.
Magazine Design, has come to be recognized as a force to reckon with and hence deserving of an award category of its own by many creative communities.
It was a woeful day yesterday, when yet again our right to freedom of expression was threatened and saw retaliation unmatched and cowardly,