Footpath Bookshop’s Mastyagandha, the photobook that explores the city of Mumbai through its smells is now available worldwide on Kindle.
Matsyagandha in the media
“This new photo book will mark the pitstops for a Mumbai olfactory tour”
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“The book is divided into several sections, including Bombay Duck, Food, Nostalgia, Textiles, Rivers and Monsoon. The images featured in it have been shot over a period of 10 years. Apart from the neighbourhoods of the city, Gopal also wanted to capture less obvious concepts like the smell of fear and sweat.”
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Text and image extracts from the book in Chirag Dilli – the website with some of the most interesting observations on urban India today. Read it here: Smell and the City
About the images in this book
The images in this book were shot over a period of 10 years while walking the streets of Mumbai, with a camera in hand and documenting the changes the metropolis is going through. Anyone who has visited Mumbai would have experienced the sudden rush of smells when they encounter the city for the first time. The salt in the air, the air heavy with humidity, the smells of millions living in close quarters on an island where the city has grown vertically and the smell of their sweat. Since I am primarily a street photographer or ‘documenter’, I followed my nose and clicked what’s not too obvious and what’s well hidden from the streets in Mumbai. Many of these stories are hiding in plain sight too in our crowded streets and bylanes. I have also tried to avoid the cliches about the city. Because the city is much photographed and as the home to the India’s main film industry, well represented in popular media. I have also avoided too nostalgia about the city (Ah Bombay!) but you will still find memories of real-life experiences of people who grew up or lived a long time in Mumbai. There are many things here which they would have imagined to have disappeared from the city, still exists. Finally, the book is dedicated to the sea that surrounds the city and provides the underlining smell across this photo book. I hope that you will like our city’s Matsyagandha.