A quick look at Lahore

After completing school at the University of North Carolina, Nushmia Khan spent time traveling abroad. In Lahore, Pakistan, the recent grad with a background in multimedia journalism visited family and took over 5,000 photos. She shares some of them in a short film called “Time in Lahore.”

The music is by Basheer & The Pied Pipers. Visit Nushmia.net for more about Khan and her trip to Pakistan (“Leaving Pindi is always hard” and “It’s a man’s world”).

Jindal kids at the ball

The MSNBC PhotoBlog thinks the Jindal kids–Selia, Slade and Shaan–stole the show at their father’s inauguration for his second term. In the blog’s photo picks, the young threesome make a red-carpeted entrance at the inauguration and peer into a canister presented to their father during the ceremony. Nola.com includes another image of the kids on the dance floor with their parents in its gallery of the inaugural festivities.

Gov. Jindal spent a good portion of his┬áspeech yesterday (full text) on the┬átopic of education and ended with cheers of Who Dat! and Geaux Tigers! in support of the state’s sports teams.

From deli streets to Delhi streets

Aakash Nihalani’s solo exhibition in India opened on September 24 and runs through October 22 at Seven Art Ltd. in New Delhi. Aalign presents new works in metal and wood sculpture, embroidered patterns on silk, interactive work shown on a tablet, and the installations of colorful, geometric tape work on the street for which he became known in New York. Nihalani shared a few thoughts after I asked him about his experiences in New Delhi and the differences and/or similarities between making street art in New York and New Delhi.

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Gonna Dress You Up in Pattu


People Magazine recently spotted Padma Lakshmi’s young daughter wearing a colorful, traditional outfit. Will celebrity-watching fashionista parents soon be on the lookout for tiny pattu-langas (apparently also called pattu pavada) at their local baby boutiques? Perhaps, though they might have better luck finding these children’s outfits at online bazaars.

I can’t remember my first pattu-langa, but there’s probably a picture of me in it in one of my parents’ photo albums. When we were growing up, my sisters and I, and more recently my niece, were dressed up in these silky, shiny outfits for special events or big family parties. The langa or skirt part of my outfits was longer, going down to my feet. But I also like the style worn by Krishna because in addition to its pretty purple hue, its shorter length looks like it could be easier to wear while toddling around as a baby.

Hit up YouTube for more pattu-langa cuteness.

Photo: desiVastra Continue reading

Sikhs in the Yankee Army

As we tweeted earlier, here is an intriguing picture: A Sikh American Civil War veteran [via Sikhnet]

Here is the caption as to the origin of the picture:

I came across this photograph recently. It is a photo of British veterans of the American Civil War of 1861-65. The British veterans had gathered in London in 1917 to welcome the American troops on their way to Fight in France during World War One. Among them is (I believe ) a Sikh gentlemen sitting near the centre. I am curious to see if there were any Sikhs in the US army at this time.I am trying to discover this persons story as it is seems very interesting. Any insight in this matter would be most appreciated. -R.S. Kooner

Keep in mind that service in the U.S. military has always been one path to citizenship.

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Picturing War and Peace: Sri Walpola (Photos)


This may look like it’s from a picture postcard, but it was a surprise for me to see a lone fisherman in the Jaffna lagoon where fishing had been totally banned during most of the past two decades. The ceasefire, despite its problems, had added a ray of hope for many people of the Northern & Eastern provinces of Sri Lanka.

–photographer Sri Walpola on “Jaffna Fisherman”

This is the episode in which we are on Staten Island! Because a friend recently tipped me off to this:

War & Peace in Sri Lanka Photos by Sri Walpola (Click for the show’s official description. Thanks, Deepti! I am not posting any of the photos here, for obvious reasons … but if you scroll to the end of the post, you’ll see two ways to see some of them much of the rest of the show too. EDITOR’S NOTE/UPDATED 8/11: Sri Walpola and I have been trading messages, and he generously offered to send me pictures to put up here. I have interspersed them with the text that I originally posted, and included his captions.)

Unless you are already lucky enough to live on Staten Island, head to the ferry and take the boat over there. Staten Island has a substantial Sri Lankan community, and indeed, if you find your way into the St. George Library Center (not far from where the ferry docks) and a kindly library staffer thinks you look Sri Lankan and/or confused, he may not even wait for you to ask where the show is before he points you downstairs, toward the reference room. It is possible that this is the warmest reaction you will ever have to being profiled.

If it is the weekend, neighborhood residents will be reading, or perhaps checking e-mail. Comfy chairs and tables are scattered about. Card catalogs, tables. The people leafing through newspapers or working quietly on laptops will not look up to watch you scan what hovers above their heads: the photography of Sri Walpola, a former presidential photographer in Sri Lanka. His pictures of the civil war in Sri Lanka are on display here for the first time in the U.S.

The twentysome pictures on the walls range from heartbreakingly hopeful pictures of the ceasefire to devastating portraits of families separated by fences and displays of military and militant firepower. Some of the pictures are printed in a high gloss; others are matte, so that they appear almost like oils, or old movie stills. A friend describes one as especially painterly–a Jaffna fisherman standing in his boat, the blue of the background dark and pure behind him, the line between water and sky nearly seamless.

(ED 8/11: Obviously that’s the photo up top. Click for more of his pics.) Continue reading

Caption Contest: Mark Zuckerberg parties it up, desi-style


Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg took a break from rewriting his company’s privacy policy last winter to attend the wedding of two of his employees in India. Facebook’s Principal Project Manager Ruchi Sanghvi and Director of Engineering Aditya Agarwal were married in January.

Fast Company reported these details about the ceremony back in February:

…Zuckerberg and more than a dozen past-and-present Facebook indispensables — including now-departed cofounders Adam D’Angelo and Dustin Moskovitz — trekked to a beach in Goa, India, for a week-long family celebration. Everyone dressed in costumed splendor; Zuckerberg looked fetching in a maroon silk sherwani. Women flashed henna tattoos. The groom arrived on horseback.

The photo above was one of five pictures from the wedding that were recently submitted to a photo contest on the Indian IT news site Techgoss. Receiving the photos was a big coup for the site, as they had unsuccessfully tried to photograph Zuckerberg both while he was in India for the wedding and during his 2008 trip to the country.

Of course, the first thing I thought when I saw this photo was that it was the perfect entry for a caption contest. So have at it, Mutineers. Leave your wittiest and most creative captions below.

(Via Valleywag)

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I love the littlest Shivashankar…

Kavya meets the President!

…contender-to-watch Vanya, so sassy in her blue and black frock. I can’t help it. She’s the reason why I’m writing this post. Well, that and because luminous Mutineer Nilanjana tweeted the link to this picture— and had she not made like a virtual, social-media bird, I would have never seen such a delightful image of last year’s Scripps National Spelling Bee champion, Kavya Shivashankar (on the left), meeting the President, with her family proudly beside her. Continue reading