The ever changing configurations of the neighbourhoods continuously re-construct the urban public and public entertainment in the city.
A graveyard area demarcated as an entertainment district by the British govt. in 1857. The establishments of variety entertainment transformed into play houses to silent cinema to talkies over the century. The cluster of a dozen theatres, most of them older than cinema itself, still function catering to the migrant wage workers from Bihar and UP as the neighbouring red light area known as Kamatipura fades out.
Literary means the bazaar of the thieves, it is where the residual material of the city’s public and private lives and their look-alike accumulate with the hope of a re-run in the commodity circuit – antiques, film posters, memorabilia, old letters, family photographs, road signage, discarded gazettes, fake Ravi Varma, print of European masters, used electric bulbs and so on.
What is not in Chor Bazaar did not take place in the city.
Photo Credit: Mamta Murthy
Means village of textile mills. Since the ‘80s the textile industry in the city has been steadily deteriorating and the land mass marked for the manufacturing industry is being converted for the service industry, commodity market and high end residential purpose. As the tall chimneys get pulled down and the factory sheds give away to the glass walls of corporate offices the workers’ community housings, popularly called chawls for their archetypical design, still stay put with adamant tenacity. In a fantastic performance of urban plasticity the local cultural-religious festivals of Govinda and Ganapati have adopted to the newly emerged hybrid cityscape.
Photo Credit: Sameer Tawde
The shanty town of Adarsh Nagar (literally means Model Town), the glitters of Lokhandwala market, the Barista café at Yari Road (now replaced by another chic coffee shop) and the workers’ chawl in SVP Nagar constitute the suburb of Andheri West, which is approximately 3 to 12 kilometers away from all major film and TV studios. Approximately 8000 units of service providers to cinema and television industry exist in this area. This is one of the main neighbourhoods where the migrant Bollywood aspirants head towards as soon as they arrive in the city.