20 January, 2021

Poetry In Motion Pic

Stunning photographs of the earliest of our screen goddesses, Devika Rani

Poetry In Motion Pic

Fabio Mansion in Goa’s Moira hamlet is another inconspicuous, modest house down the road. No sign announces the bit of cinema history lying behind its walls—unknown, unacknowledged and uncelebrated. I’m at the house of Wolfgang Peter Wirsching, son of Joseph Wirsching, among the earliest cinematographers of Indian cinema. A German, Wirsching Sr arrived in India in 1925, for the Indo-European collaboration, The Light of Asia, directed by another non-native, Franz Osten. Wirsching went on to make India his home and worked in more than 20 films of the leading film studio of the time—Bombay Talkies—and later with Kamal Amrohi on Dil Apna Aur Preet Parayi and Pakeezah.

Death overtook him in 1967 while he was still shooting Pakeezah. But locked in an obscure steel trunk, he left behind a rare, inestimable legacy—a magnificent treasure of pictures he took on and off film sets. Some 2,000 priceless images associated with the movies he was working in, besides many film synopsis...



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