You are here: Home » PTI Stories » National » News
Business Standard

Paris Metro, Mumbai suburban trains inspire book on poems

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Four women poets and illustrators from India and France use the Metro of Paris and the suburban railway of Mumbai as the subject for their book which they see as a blend of visuals and words of journeys.

French-Indian poet Karthika Nair, French illustrator Joelle Jolivet, poet-novelist Sampurna Chattarji and Gond artiste Roshni Vyam have joined hands for "Metro Lands", which is expected to be out in the next three-four months.

Chattarji said the idea for the book struck the two poets a year ago when she suggested about collaborating on some poetry project to Nair, who said that the subject could be their respective train systems.

But Nair said they were not thinking about coming up with a book at that time.

"It was more of a poetry adventure or an exercise because we both wanted to do something less solitary, move out of our usual spheres of interest and activities. And then, it was about almost two years ago that we started writing from February last year," she said.

So, about a year later, the French Embassy saw these poems, while they were preparing for Bonjour India 2017.

"And they were very interested to take this forward and asked us if we would like to do something with these poems.

"And we asked if we could collaborate with illustrators because we thought that it would be a nice compliment to the written words to have visuals and bring to life these little worlds we are talking about," Nair told PTI.

Chattarji said the form is intrinsic to the way the book and the text have been constructed as the last line of Nair's poem becomes the first line of her poem and vice versa.

"So, it's not a random assortment of poems about travelling in trains in Mumbai and Paris. It's a very interlinked sequence of poems," she said.

When the artistes were asked for a graphic representation of the poetry that compliments each other, Jolivet came to Mumbai to discover the train system and Vyam went to France to see the Paris Metro.

"Our vision is very different because I am making live sketches. So I use my live sketches like I did with Sampurna in the train and Roshni has a more imaginative vision of the Paris Metro. So, it's interesting to confront our very different styles," said Jolivet.

According to Vyam, it was a new experience for her as a Gond artiste.

"Karthika's poem was about Paris Metro and I was to illustrate it. So, it was a new experience for me being a Gond artiste as it is a traditional art form and now I'm going to experiment with my art," she said.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,


Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Tue, December 19 2017. 13:45 IST
RECOMMENDED FOR YOU