27 October, 2020

Hoarding Secrets

Pop, art, sociology...the film poster is B’wood’s abiding subplot

Apoorva Salkade
Hoarding Secrets

Love affairs are made memorable by their time, place and backdrop. Any Indian film buff with even a passing infatuation with Hindi cinema will remember the first awakening thrill of a film by its publicity—the mega-sized hoardings that erupted at street junctions, the blitz of black-and-white print adverts in newspapers and vivid posters outside theatres and the endless dawdling over lobby cards and song books in cinema foyers and film magazines. Lately, Bollywood poster art has acquired the patina of both cultural cliché and pop art collectible—an over-the-top, lurid image of Indigestible India rather than Incredible India. Since the gradual demise of hand-painted billboards and the transition from paper to vinyl prints to digital technology in the 1990s, there have been a few erratic studies of the social and cultural significance of this art; but it’s...



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