Founder Naveen Kishore through the eyes of colleagues and collaborators

My first assembly with Naveen Kishore was marked by an absence. By the point I met him he was the Enigma from Calcutta as town was then recognized, the person behind Seagull Books which had introduced us our first movie scripts, our first play scripts and a few heavy hitting non-fiction books and necessary translations. I anticipated him to take all of the oxygen within the room, to refill area in the best way some publishing legends had been wont to do. As an alternative what I found was a watchful withdrawal, extra in line with a author or a poet.

Over time nonetheless, I’ve additionally found a heat supplied in homoeopathic and therapeutic doses; and a pal who can get issues achieved. To wit: I arrive in Kolkata because it was then renamed, with an odd procuring checklist, dictated to me by a cousin. I want to purchase barley sugar sweets and Chinese language sausages. Naveen Kishore listens to those with as a lot consideration as to the proposal of a brand new ebook. He then turns to his diary and calls an Anglo-Indian pal. It takes him ten minutes of bonhomie to get to the query. I’m directed to New Market to a Jewish store for the barley sugar.

The sausages will take some doing as a result of I’m solely in Calcutta for a few days, sufficient time to ship a lecture on the Seagull College of Publishing and to go to the Bharhut Gallery on the Indian Museum once more. They’re solely offered within the early morning on market day in Tangra and I might be again in Bombay.

“They are going to be delivered,” says Naveen Kishore.

“They’re pork sausages,” I level out delicately.

“Sure,” says Naveen as if he has spent all his life coping with deliveries of animal merchandise throughout the size and breadth of a rustic the place the principle position of god appears to be that of a dietician. “They are going to be delivered.”

And they also had been.

That is the primary of a two-part portrait of Naveen Kishore and Seagull. Learn the second half here.

The various Naveen Kishores

Later, I started to attend the History for Peace conferences, having fun with interacting with lecturers from throughout the nation, all of whom had been in search of methods to reimagine historical past and there was Naveen too, sitting within the again when Romila Thapar or Ganesh Devy or Apoorvanand was chatting with lecturers from everywhere in the nation. And there have been additionally occasions he would attend a Jerry Pinto discuss, which happy me.

Then there was the Naveen Kishore who turned up on Instagram, sharing images and odd plangent movies, quick ones, suggestive of an eye fixed for the extraordinary within the odd, for the potential for intersection and allusion.

And naturally, Naveen Kishore has now printed his first ebook of poems, Knotted Grief, designed elegantly by Sunandini Banerjee who has had the great sense to remain out of the best way of the phrases, including solely to the ebook a collection of tildes and an enviable quantity of empty area. The poems are a political act, not simply within the sense that every one speech is a political act, and even selecting to put in writing about Kishore, right here, now, is a political act. These are poems of grief and outrage. They’ve been, I believe, intently and savagely edited so that there’s are gaps, areas into which the reader should come and stay and endure.

There appear to be two sorts of Seagull books in my library. There are the previous greats, those that signify my schooling and my coaching, the historical past of Marathi theatre as seen by means of the prisms of the playwrights and Shanta Gokhale; the movie scripts of Mrinal Sen, the sooner Mahasweta Devi books; after which there are the v2.0 books, the shiny beauties of Yves Bonnefoy’s Ursa Main and the set of twelve books of Jean-Paul Sartre essays; the poetry checklist that makes me really feel the burden of my illiteracy: Georg Trakl and Abdourahman Waberi, for example; the novels and the essays on The Artwork of Diremption
These are actually lovely and distinctive, all having been designed by Sunandini Banerjee, a lot so now that when some Mumbai bookstores have begun stocking Seagull (Kitabkhana, Title Waves, The White Crow), I can truly spot them at a distance.

And so it was no shock when Naveen Kishore was awarded the Ottaway Prize. The web says that it was “named in honour of James H Ottaway, Jr, the primary board chair of Phrases With out Borders” and “recognises people who’ve taken extraordinary steps to advance worldwide literature in English translation.”

Trying on the biodata, on the checklist of pursuits and the type and unfold of involvements, it appears troublesome to consider that the quiet man of the absent presence was so necessary within the lives of individuals as completely different because the legendary singer Pam Crain and the painter Okay G Subramanyan. After we misplaced Pam Crain, Naveen wrote about her:


Her singing was easy. Free. Comfortable with the music. Rehearsed. Not within the method of the hours of apply one associates with live performance preparation. I imply rehearsed as in residing each second of 1’s life as a singer-performer in order that the transition from ‘rehearsing’ to efficiency is seamless. Her life was a rehearsal. There have been no value tags to Pam’s songs. By which I imply that she was far too courteous to let you realize what it value her to turn out to be the singer. It wasn’t necessary. It was no enterprise of ours to know what it value the singer to make her artwork attain the edge of perfection she had not solely crossed however made redundant. Erased it fully. No divisions. The boundary kicked apart. She would step on to that stage. Taking all fifty-three shades of sunshine that the lighting man had positioned in a grid above and round her head. Intuitively. To her benefit. Or run on to the stage from the wings. Propelled just like the poem that you simply cant maintain again. She by no means danced on to the stage. The untrained eye might have thought she did! Her physique transferring to the groove. However no. It was one thing else. Her heels and toes carried out a haiku. She merely walked the rhythm that the band had damaged into and with out a lot as a by your go away belt out, whisper, cajole, yell, vomit that music. ‘Full throated ease’ certainly! What mattered was the music. She turned the phrases that she sang. And sure we danced. She made us dance. In our heads. On the ground. Within the aisles. Together with her. She had that particular one thing which artists have. Not all artists. Some. The sort whose mould goes AWOL after they’re born. The flexibility to attach. Her method of performing would make the viewers explode into particular person particles. Every feeling a singular affinity simply along with her. Chances are you’ll name it bond. An umbilical twine that the viewers couldn’t probably tie off. Minimize. Tear unfastened. Not even after she had stopped and determined to provide the blokes within the band a break along with her ‘relaxation some time’.

¬ What do you do if you find yourself caught in a music? When you find yourself nicely into singing it. A great distance from residence. And know what the following phrases are. And those after that. And all of a sudden you’ll be able to’t go on. Phrases that had been sharply in focus. Clear. Tangible. With weight and quantity. All of a sudden dropping their form. Starting to seem faint. And hazy. Outlines blurred. The as soon as heard music faint. Fading. Like somebody had begun to erase issues. And was doing a foul job.

You allow behind your current.
And also you stroll swiftly however calmly into the fog.
Solely this time it’s the boys within the band who say ‘relaxation some time expensive Pam’.
You earned it.

‘Supportive and approachable’

I reached out to a lot of those that have recognized the Enigma in numerous methods and capacities, beginning with Anjum Katyal whose affiliation is many years previous, the 2 having met when Anjum had completed with faculty and had a number of months earlier than she would be a part of Presidency School. Like so many others of her demographic within the metropolis, she headed to Purple Curtain to moist her theatrical ft.

“Naveen was 4 years older than me which was an enormous hole on the time. However he was supportive and pleasant and approachable,” she stated over the cellphone.

Katyal went to the US for “additional research” and there her curiosity in protest folks music grew stronger and the blues started to talk to her. “As much as then, I’d rope in some hapless male pal with me to accompany me on the guitar as a result of I had by no means bothered to learn to play. Now I needed one thing extra full-bodied so there was a bunch of musician pals, Nandan Bagchi, Subir Chatterjee they usually had a bunch referred to as Excessive, a rock group. Dilip Balakrishnan and Lew Hilt had been the singers and music writers. That was the line-up. We determined to do a full-on rock present. We did a small one, no cash, naked bones because the Calcutta College of Music which was a hit. After we needed to do a much bigger present, and ebook a correct corridor, we got here up in opposition to a wall. The individuals who did the bookings would say, ‘Rock? Na na, hobe na, hobe na. The viewers is simply too wild. They smoke, they drink, they’re uncontrolled’; the one method we might get anybody to agree was if a correct established manufacturing firm was keen to ebook it of their title. Now Seagull Empire was the main, high-quality producer of reveals and Naveen was very a lot a part of it; Nandan stated, ‘Let’s go discuss to Naveen. He’s an previous pal.’ I didn’t suppose this is able to work out as a result of they had been actually massive, the Quincy Jones of Calcutta, however we went to see him and Nandan defined the state of affairs, we’d achieved a present, we needed to do one other, we needed them to ebook for us, and Naveen heard him out and stated, ‘Fantastic, we’ll do it.’ I didn’t consider it had occurred so easily for us, so recklessly for them. I stated, ‘You haven’t even heard us sing,’ and he stated, ‘You’re singing, and there’s Nandan and Subir and Dilip, proper? That’s ok.’ And with that certainly one of religion, I received drawn into Seagull and the Seagull ethos.”

Seagull did reveals along with her, one or two a yr till 1986 when Anjum had a child, rehearsal stopped, individuals moved out of town one of many musicians fell unwell and died, in different phrases life occurred.
It was in 1982 that Seagull Books occurred and all appeared to be going nicely till Samik Banerjee moved out all of a sudden. He had been modifying the books and Katyal remembers that there was a frantic seek for a brand new editor. “Solely most people we had been contemplating had about the identical {qualifications} as I did and as a lot expertise which was nil. So someday, Naveen stated to me, ‘Why don’t you edit?’ And I, with the hubris of youth, stated, ‘Why not?’”

‘Intrigued by Seagull’

A wing and a prayer? Looks as if it however when Romila Thapar is keen to put in writing a remark over electronic mail about her affiliation with Seagull, you realize that one thing is being achieved proper. Over electronic mail, the redoubtable historian write about her affiliation with Seagull Books:

“I met Naveen Kishore a few decade in the past over a slight dialog a few publication that by no means got here off. I received to know him higher about seven years in the past. One other pal of mine gave me a few Seagull Books catalogues, saying that they shouldn’t be learn as catalogues however that every was a ebook in itself masking numerous pursuits. That’s actually what they’re. I discovered the catalogues significantly engaging as there have been transient essays by some very good trendy authors, conversations between Naveen and other people comparable to Yves Bonnefois, Reinhard Jirgl, Ben Anderson and some others that exposed one thing of each them and him ; and an array of shorter items by poets and prose writers from wherever and in all places the world over, however these whose writing was considerate and composed with a formidable use of language and creativeness. Studying certainly one of these catalogues was such a pleasurable schooling.

I used to be intrigued by Seagull – an impartial publishing home in India whose lists had solely high quality books in literature, philosophy and considered varied sorts, and authors that had been among the many finest throughout many boundaries. There is no such thing as a scarcity of different kinds of publishers, some that publish primarily educational books, and are backed by an establishment ; and a few who’ve the backing of a commercially profitable writer, punctuating best-selling fiction with a couple of thought-provoking books. There are only some impartial publishers, as is Seagull, who’ve to search out their very own funding and are decided to not deal with any ebook they publish as a commodity. I questioned in regards to the query that’s seldom mentioned, specifically, to what extent do publishers in supporting explicit sorts of writing and topics, give a course to the pondering of a society.

What helped me discover out extra about Seagull and to get to know Naveen had been the invites from the Seagull Basis of the Arts, particularly the Historical past for Peace programmes. Conferences had been held largely for varsity lecturers to be able to acquaint them with the context of a number of the extra pertinent problems with the day. I’d be invited to talk on points of decoding historical past. I drastically loved these conferences as they at all times collected a brilliant group of lecturers who requested looking questions and by no means allow you to off the hook. The audio system had been additionally of a stage the place I regarded ahead to every of the various periods and listened with curiosity to the shows and the discussions that adopted. That this was achieved in Calcutta additionally meant attending to know a metropolis that I didn’t know very nicely. The points of interest had been sari-hunting in Byloom and particular retailers that had a spread of handloom merchandise and returning to Delhi with these, in addition to Nahoum’s wealthy fruit cake from New Market.

Naveen’s personal contributions in a number of the conversations within the catalogue, because the one with Reinhard Jirgl had been fairly mind-blowing of their depth. Studying these, and in pursuing the forthcoming lists of publications, raised my curiosity about his personal literary articulation. I then found that he wrote poetry. Once I lastly received to learn a few of his poems I used to be bowled over by the imagery and the idioms that reworked the world that he was talking of, and with such inherent sensitivity. But he by no means made a critical try and publish them they usually simply circulated amongst pals. It was solely very lately that he allowed himself to be ‘found’ and printed, each in India and internationally.

My discovery of Naveen was by means of the Seagull Area. He had the sensible thought of organising an area within the spare room behind my home to host fortnightly conferences. A night each fortnight would see a author, historian, poet, musician, film-maker, photographer, or another inventive individual current his or her work and speak about it. He too was concerned in a few movies that had been proven. The room accommodated about forty individuals. Typically there have been far fewer and generally so many who the bay home windows needed to be opened and other people sat within the courtyard exterior. The discussions went on for wherever between one to 2 hours and infrequently longer. Carlo Ginsberg speaking about micro-history collected an enthusiastic large viewers, as additionally did Ravish Kumar talking on modern occasions, and lots of spoke, so we regarded ahead to full of life evenings.

After the discuss or the efficiency or the presentation, a couple of of us would collect for dinner in my residence. The night would start with certainly one of Naveen’s favorite pre-dinner drinks – Manhattans that I had learnt to make a few years in the past when in Washington – and generally dinner would conclude with once more one his most relished sweets, a baked jalebi pudding.

Round this time Seagull had picked up a couple of of my books printed in India with a distribution confined to South Asia. These had been reprinted by Seagull for worldwide distribution. It was in the midst of conversations on these that I discussed that I used to be engaged on a small ebook on the existence of dissent in Indian historical past. Naveen was most excited and requested for extra info on the proposed ebook. Lastly, he insisted that Seagull would publish it.

I used to be hesitant at first. I believed that Indian historical past might not be a chief topic for Seagull, given all the opposite books that they publish, however I used to be talked out of this. I’m now delighted that I printed it with Seagull because it has been a distinct type of expertise. It was thrilling to be in a listing considerably of main writers from throughout cultures whom they publish. The publicity for this ebook was one other type of expertise. There was an fascinating cross-section of questions and reactions that saved me questioning what the following query could be. And Sunandini’s covers have been gorgeous.”

‘…that catalogue’

I would love right here to inform of the primary time I noticed Ms Banerjee on the high of a staircase, the spiral that leads you from the bottom ground of Seagull Books to the higher ground which is as eclectic and sensible as its checklist, nevertheless it may get a bit of embarrassing and he or she just isn’t the topic of this profile. She wrote about her affiliation with Seagull Books and Naveen Kishore over electronic mail:

“I first met Naveen at a publishing workshop organised over a collection of weekends by Thema, an impartial publishing home right here in Calcutta, positioned pretty near the place I stay. Thema is run by Samik Bandyopadhyay and Kalyani Ghose. They’d organised a 4 or five-module workshop masking the fundamentals of publishing. Two weekends on modifying, one on manufacturing, one on design and one on gross sales and advertising and marketing. I used to be finding out for my Grasp’s in English Literature then, at Jadavpur College, and was very eager to complete my research and attempt to see if I might get a job in an promoting company.

I used to be already very desirous about areas the place textual content and picture labored collectively, and at the moment, promoting appeared to be the one place the place that was being explored sufficient, and the place a younger girl, armed with not a lot moreover fluency in English, might probably make a begin. Naveen got here to that workshop and spoke about design. And gave to every of us a replica of the magnificent Seagull Books catalogue he had simply designed and produced [the one with the lightbulb on the cover]. I bear in mind how completely moved I used to be by that catalogue, that contained not simply info on the books but in addition letters and notes and poems and fragments, all collectively but all distinctive, and the design that was like nothing I had seen earlier than – a design the place the askew and the askance had as a lot room to breathe in because the posed and the deliberate.

That was once I first met Naveen. Greater than what he spoke of at school, I believe I first met him by means of that catalogue.”

‘Transfer away gently from mediocrity’

Megha Malhotra, the power behind PeaceWorks and Historical past for Peace was additionally forthcoming.

“So. 1982 I got here again residence from school and was in the course of a struggle with my father. He needed me to affix the household enterprise and I needed to do my very own factor. So after a couple of conversations with pals I used to be informed a) there’s someone referred to as Naveen Kishore, they’re performing some very fascinating work b) Rashmi Goenka is in search of an assistant inside designer for the Grand Resort and c) strive Clarion Promoting – they’ve a really massive studio.

So, the primary cease was Naveen Kishore. He was very well mannered, patiently checked out my portfolio and stated, ‘We now have someone in home who does the design work, however please keep in contact, in case one thing comes up.’ I ended up at Clarion for 2 years, then one other yr in a small company in Bombay , received married, began my very own design studio. Didn’t keep in contact. Years later my two boys and his son, who had been going to the identical faculty, and are one yr aside from one another turned pals, the birthday events and dropping and selecting up of the children reconnected us.

On the time I had began designing web sites and Seagull was in search of somebody to design their web sites. This was 2000/2001. That’s the story. Nothing specifically in regards to the ‘first assembly’ that I can consider. The web site led to the bookstore which then led to the muse and to PeaceWorks. And the whole freedom that I received right here led to Historical past for Peace.”

I requested Banerjee and Malhotra what they’d realized from Naveen. Malhotra first: “It’s been a technique of progress – great progress, on account of working intently with him, a results of the friendship and most of all being on this atmosphere that he has created at Seagull – all of the literature, the artwork, the poetry, the individuals you meet – it’s all so explosive, you’ll be able to’t not get formed by it. He has a really pure distinctive capability to information and nurture people. I hadn’t considered this earlier, however now in making an attempt to reply the query I realise maybe I realized to study myself. To recognise mediocrity and gently transfer away from it. All of us right here I believe have additionally realized the worth of aesthetics and make it a dailyness in our lives, at residence, at work, in each facet of life. Not in a superfluous method however in a method that truly makes you consider that in case you are surrounded by magnificence it’ll translate into who you might be, what you do and the way you work together with the world round you, in occasions of struggles too.”

Banerjee subsequent: “What have I learnt from Naveen? To not quit. To be form as a result of it’s a lot more durable than being merciless. That each downside has an answer. That the world is an oyster for the courageous and the curious. That as an alternative of asking why, we should always extra typically be asking why not? That many leaders lead, however only a few leaders allow and even fewer ask you to steer as an alternative. That one can take dangers and be as reckless as one needs to so long as one is keen to pay the value. That nothing is simple simply because one makes it look so. That publishing is a lifestyle.”

‘Capability to appeal’

Time to ask one other writer about Naveen Kishore. The legendary feminist writer of Zubaan Urvashi Butalia presents notes on a protracted affiliation:

“I’ve recognized Naveen a very long time and am typically deeply envious of him, however in a constructive, admiring method – what I name a ‘constructive envy’, I love what he’s doing, want I might do it, however know I can’t, and am due to this fact glad – but in addition envious – he and his staff are. Within the early days of our acquaintance, we had some not very simple enterprise dealings, so friendship was a far cry. However then, when Kali cut up, he reached out to me and it was nice to have somebody inside the career to talk to, and that’s when our friendship cemented. I believe Seagull is a tremendous publishing home, its selection of finding itself in Kolkata and proudly and assertively being a world writer is exclusive. And through the years, Naveen has constructed up a terrific staff, all of whom cement Seagull’s work. 

Naveen likes to think about himself as a shy and retiring man however nothing could possibly be farther from the reality, he’s an ace networker, the type who networks effortlessly and with class and elan – he’ll carry his personal espresso machine to worldwide ebook gala’s and other people strolling by will catch the aroma and drop in, and conversations will ensue. He has the capability to appeal previous girls and previous males with equal ease and others of various ages too, and he’ll set his sights on one thing that appears inconceivable and go after it and do it. Over time he has been a pal to Zubaan, supporting us in varied methods, and he’s inventive too – loves artwork and images and poetry – but in addition hidden behind that literary and seemingly laid again exterior is a pointy enterprise thoughts and I generally want I had one such too!”

‘My world blew open’

That is the providing of Naveen Kishore, the thoughts of a businessman, the guts of a poet, the risk-taking of an artist and the jigyaasaa of a kid. Everybody, it appeared, had a Naveen Kishore story. However I’ll finish right here with Sameera Iyengar, the dramaturge and theatre maniac, who labored with him on the Seagull Theatre Quarterly. It’s because she represents the following era and in her recounting of this time, you see how Kishore inflects the narrative of this nation in so many alternative methods:

“I joined Seagull Theatre Quarterly when simply embarking on determining the subject for my PhD thesis. Anjum Katyal, then editor of STQ, merely stated to me, ‘Work right here when you’re doing all of your analysis and contribute from what you discover. Working at STQ, within the atmosphere of Seagull Books, was like stepping by means of a portal right into a magical world. The expertise opened up the world of theatre and efficiency throughout India for me; it positively outlined what finally turned my PhD thesis, however extra importantly, I consider it set the foundations for what would turn out to be my angle to working with efficiency and with artists in India.

STQ had its finger on the heartbeat of what was taking place in efficiency throughout India – and my sense is that it had so much to do with the best way Naveen was. He has at all times had a nostril for this – continues to take action together with his present Seagull Books work which is phenomenal. They usually had been inquisitive about completely every little thing. The Quarterly went with equal ease, respect and curiosity from ruminations on the aesthetics of road theatre to cell theatre travelling by means of Assam, to exploring theatre and efficiency within the context of embattled Manipur to thought items on efficiency to masking festivals to the work of Habib Tanvir and so forth. It was alive to the variety of efficiency endeavours throughout the nation, and to the contexts wherein issues had been taking place. So when the Gujarat pogrom occurred, STQ responded with a double difficulty, “A Cannibal Time”, handing over the modifying of this difficulty to Sudhanva Deshpande of Jana Natya Manch.

Within the two or three part-time years I spent at Seagull, my world blew open. Not solely was STQ opening my eyes to the vary of and causes for apply throughout the nation, I too was being despatched to cowl and take part in numerous environments. I used to be despatched to cowl the 1997 Theatre of India Prithvi Theatre Competition – there I received launched to the fantastic work of Teejan Bai, Ratan Thiyam, Kanhailal and others. I used to be despatched to cowl the Kulavai conference-festival on theatre for ladies organised by Voicing Silence – which introduced collectively girls in theatre from throughout skilled theatre apply, city apply, NGO apply and rural apply, a uncommon, uncommon and highly effective gathering. Whereas there in Chennai, I ended up masking Magic Lantern’s efficiency rendition of Kalki’s serialised literary work Ponnyin Selvan within the breath-taking outside environs of the YMCA. I participated in a Seagull hosted workshop by Kanhailal and Sabitri Heisnam, and was the on-ground coordinator for a workshop by Jana Sanskriti for ladies survivors of home violence. Within the quick time I used to be there, I used to be getting entry and publicity first-hand to the superb work being achieved in efficiency in India. My three case research for my thesis emerged from explorations begun with STQ.

Strolling into Seagull was like strolling right into a magical world. STQ and Seagull Books had been on the identical workplace premises, at Circus Avenue at the moment. It was thrilling to see cabinets lined with the English translations of Mahasweta Devi’s writing, and Anuradha Kapur’s ebook on the Ramleela and Sergei Eisenstein’s writings and Mahesh Elkunchwar’s scripts. It was fascinating to be round listening to the growing of Shanta Gokhale’s Playwright on the Centre. English entry to Indian work was coming by means of Seagull in translations and different writing, and it was inside arms’ attain each time I walked by means of these doorways. A few years later, whereas working with Prithvi, we collaborated with Seagull to host Seagull occasions at Prithvi – and I had the honour and privilege of escorting Mahasweta Devi by air from Kolkata to Mumbai, and internet hosting her right here.

Strolling into Seagull was additionally sharing area with Samik Bandopadhyay as he rigorously labored on some ebook for Seagull, and being mesmerised by actress Ketaki Datta reliving her glory days with story after story, preserving us away from work and laughing delightedly on the finish that she might nonetheless maintain an viewers. It was strolling in to see Gayatri Chakarvorty Spivak, famed and feared educational within the US, sprawled on the ground, engaged on one thing, at her genial finest. It was assembly the fabulous feminine impersonator Chapal Bhaduri and traipsing throughout to North Calcutta to see his efficiency in a small bylane – Naveen’s images of the identical at the moment are touring as an exhibition. It was having Chittrovanu Mazumdar drop in, and in some unspecified time in the future strolling by means of an set up of his gentle by Naveen in a discovered area on Loudon Road (if I bear in mind accurately).

It was expertise after new expertise, every embraced with equal pleasure and love and respect. The inspiration of the work Naveen has been capable of do, I consider, lies within the relationships he builds with artists – his deep love and respect of their work, and the belief they place in him to deal with them and their work. Which I consider he takes totally severely.

What I additionally cherished about Seagull was the utter dedication to high quality, and the refusal to chop corners or be ‘poor’ in any method. A top quality publication required high quality computer systems on which high quality design could possibly be achieved – so Naveen was going to have Macs within the workplace. He had the colorful bulbous iMacs once they first got here out – and this was method earlier than Macs had been the ever present computer systems they’re in the present day. However they had been one of the best computer systems for the work he was doing – so Seagull was going to get them. I realized the love of paper and structure and design and good high quality pictures whereas working at Seagull – it was within the air, it was there within the in any other case quiet Naveen’s excited exclamation of a structure he had arrived at – we’d all collect spherical to take pleasure in it with him.

Naveen didn’t clarify what he did that a lot. And when he did, I didn’t at all times perceive his phrases. It was Anjum, the editor of STQ who defined and launched much more. However with Naveen, you watched what he did, how he did. You journeyed into all the varied avenues he ventured by means of, not essentially understanding what Chittravanu’s vibrant caterpillar-like set up needed to do with Chapal Bhaduri’s efficiency of Sitala Devi or with Jana Sanskriti’s discussion board theatre.

However slowly and absolutely you started seeing this as a part of the identical universe – numerous however equal gamers, every giving the reward of the humanities to the bigger world. And Naveen, in partnership with Anjum for STQ, was this conduit, giving to the humanities and the artists the love, respect and area they deserved. Not enjoying by any pre-existing guidelines, however pushed with the spirit of a theatreperson – which is how he started – to say, if this must be achieved, let’s discover a approach to do it. I watch his superb work with Seagull Books in the present day, and I see that very same spirit – and it’s outstanding what it achieves.

That is the primary of a two-part portrait of Naveen Kishore and Seagull. Learn the second half here.

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