Registered with the Registrar of Newspapers for India under R.N.I 53640/91

Vol. XXXI No. 11, September 16-30, 2021

More Madras Day Mementoes

The deluge of creative output for Madras Day continues unabated and we are delighted at the fact that artists have seen such potential in the city. We feature here two sets of artworks, both very interestingly done based on Chennai’s heritage.

The first set are the postcards from Aafreen who claims that much of her inspiration is from what we put out on Madras Musings. She is an alumnus of the MEASI Academy of Architecture and did her thesis on Madras Heritage Interpretation. She graduated recently with a first class. Readers may see more of her work on Instagram at @ninetyeight._.

Residences of Royapettah.

Royapettah Clock Tower.

Letter Box

Cuddon Building (Gove Building).

The next are the set of illustrations from Mahalakshmi, whose bookmarks we had featured in an earlier issue. This time, she has created an entire series with cinema as the theme. In her own words, “The idea is very simple, to bring the background to the fore and tell their stories. Many a time I have seen a beautiful old house or colonial building in a movie and wondered where they were. This series focuses on various structures scattered around the city that have been instrumental in creating some beautiful frames in Kollywood.” Readers may explore more of her work on Instagram at @mahaaxarts.

Pilot Theatre; Yethi Yethi song, Vaaranam Aayiram

Luz House; OK Kanmani.

This song actually features so many different landmarks across the city! Featured in this artwork is the Pilot Theatre that was razed down in 2017. Luz House was featured in OK Kanmani as Tara’s hostel and later as a wedding venue as well. I was surprised to discover that this bungalow is located in the heart of the city. The property has been restored and is now used as an event space for photoshoots, weddings and more.

PWD building; Vikram Vedha.

Napier Bridge; Aayudha Ezhuthu.

This scene always sends a chill down my spine and is the first thing that comes to mind whenever I use these stairways in the PWD building. ­Interestingly, the brickwork beneath both the domes of the building is placed in an ‘M’ shape, a pattern that cannot be seen elsewhere in the country. The plot of Aayudha Ezuthu centres around three people who meet on this very bridge. I’ve always considered the bridge to be the protagonist of the film as well as a key catalyst for ­unfolding events. This iconic landmark has appeared in many films and I was fascinated to know that it replaced an iron bridge of the same name.

Broken Bridge; Oh Sona! song, Vaali.

Kamadhenu Theatre; Mundhinam Paarthene song, Vaaranam Aayiram.

Broken Bridge was built so that the fisherfolk settled on both the beaches could easily cross over to the other side of the estuary. In 1977 a stretch of the bridge collapsed into the estuary when the Adyar river was unexpectedly flooded. In the song Mundhinam Paarthene, Suriya and Simran are seen walking out of a theatre with a signboard proclaiming it to be The Globe. The ­structure however is actually the erstwhile Kamadhenu theatre, today a kalyana mandapam. Located right by the Luz junction, it was one of the most popular hangouts in the city in the eighties. Incidentally, there did exist a Globe Theatre in the city at point, by the way.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *