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THE PERCH

Illustration by Chloe Cordeiro

The Peacock squawks, takes valiant flight for full nine days, and then it’s time to rest until the next edition of the International Film Festival of India.
These past few days have felt nothing short of a miracle: full theatres, delegates from around the world, an incredible banquet of cinema. Was it perfect? Actually, it was even better, because the past few days have felt normal. Coming after so many long, painful pandemic months, that was more than enough. Thank you all for making IFFI 2021 an unqualified success.
Over the past few days, we have seen our editions avidly sought out and read, with a steady stream of visitors coming to our office at the Maquinez Palace to pick up back copies (there are still a few remaining). It is extremely gratifying to our young team to see their work appreciated, and owe a debt of gratitude to the Entertainment Society of Goa for making our work essentially hassle-free.
This is the first IFFI under the charge of Dr. Tariq Thomas, and we greatly appreciate his calm competence, and ready accessibility.
As always, we are also thankful to Arantxa Afonso. This team is your team, Ma’am, and we are proud of working for you.
Way back in what seems like another eon, The Peacock was conceived to fill a vacuum that has plagued India’s oldest film festival. There’s a deeply regrettable absence of institutional memory. What happened at IFFI 26, or IFFI 32? We don’t know, and it’s extremely hard to find out. But now that there’s a daily newspaper of record, we have a copious archive, and each year we continue to build it with great purpose.
Crucial to that role from day one was the editorial team of Sachin Chatte and José Lourenço (with Amol Kamat on design), and it is great to have that brain trust restored after some years. Alongside us, the tremendous poise of Impana Kulkarni, who has become the irreplaceable gears of our machine. Thank you all, dear editors.
Why is The Peacock so beloved of IFFI delegates? We are well aware a big reason is how it looks. You can visit any number of similar festivals in every location in the world, and we are confident you’ll never see anything quite as vibrant, stylish, and filled with original art every single day. This year, our covers have been a tour de force by Bhisaji Gadekar, and we’ve also had simply brilliant illustrations by Govit Morajkar, as well as many more from the talented trio of Chloe Cordeiro, Riza Noronha, and Keziah Pereira. Take a bow, illustrators!
Of course, the visual feel of The Peacock is also substantively built on the exceptional portrait photography of Assavri Kulkarni, one of the very best anywhere. Huge thanks to her for always doing such an amazing job, in tandem with the capable extra hands of our photo team of Siddhartha Lall and Michael Praveen (who also handles our website). Congratulations, shutterbugs!
This year, we have relied heavily on our columnists. The great Damodar “Bhai” Mauzo, the foremost Konkani writer of our times, is nothing less than the anchor of our editorial identity. Lina Vincent – one of the art curators in India – has done an outstanding job in her debut for our pages, as has Fernando Velho, the deeply thoughtful architect, heritage activist, and all-round urbanist. In another vein altogether, the full-page visual column by Nadia de Souza has rapidly become one of our most beloved features.
Also invaluable is Patricia Ann Alvares, who pulled in great interviews, and the preternaturally talented Urvashi Bahuguna, who, besides being ultra-capable of every kind of cultural journalism, is also an absolutely fabulous poet who enlivened this page with original verse every day. We are thankful to Karishma D’Mello and Nomita Saldanha for doing such an excellent job with Short Takes, an integral feature that allows us to get as many widely representational voices into the paper as possible.
Dear delegates, you should know The Peacock is strictly non-denominational, but we still feel this year’s festival run should end with a prayer of thanks. To have experienced this kind of joyous community celebration, in close company with so many old and new friends, and sit in bliss with each other in the presence of such great cinematic art, is beyond a blessing as we head into the last month of 2021. Thank you all for making it possible. See you next year!

Publisher: Dr Tariq Thomas for the Entertainment Society of Goa

Editors: José Lourenço, Sachin Chatte, Impana Kulkarni, Vivek Menezes

Cover Art: Bhisaji Gadekar
Columnists: Damodar Mauzo, Lina Vincent, Fernando Velho, Nadia De Souza

Editorial: Patricia Ann Alvares, Urvashi Bahuguna, Karishma D’Mello, Nomita Saldanha

Illustration: Govit Morajkar, Chloe Cordeiro, Riza Noronha, Keziah Pereira

Lead Photographer: Assavri Kulkarni | Photo team: Siddhartha Lall, Michael Praveen

Distribution: Nachiket Shetty

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