Thursday 28 January 2021

The Fire of Creation


Title: Mind on Fire
Author: Ar. S. Gopakumar
Publisher: D C Books

Mind on Fire is a collection of interesting anecdotes and reflections that allows a peek into Architect Gopakumar’s mind, which is constantly ablaze with creative ideas. He has something to learn from everyone he comes across, including the fisherman and the farmer. Like a poet, he draws inspiration from the little things around him. His creative drive doesn’t stop with architecture, though. It extends to finding solutions for the society’s problems, which, he says, is the ultimate purpose of a designer. The book is full of insights stated with such deceptive simplicity that their significance hits you hard and out of the blue. To quote one of the many gems a reader would come across in his writing:

“But then you should also ask yourselves how much privacy you need in a community. You have seen flats built with so much of privacy that you don’t know who your neighbour is. You can even feel lonely living in an apartment complex. Human beings are meant to live as a group or a herd, but modern society has built too many walls to segregate them from each other. Consequently, the society has become selfish, insensitive and jealous. This is what wrong planning can do to a society.”

Ar. Gopakumar’s conversational style of writing makes you feel that you are not reading the book but rather listening to the author. The author, obviously, is talking from his soul. The book is replete with sketches drawn by the author himself which enhances the experience of reading the book and makes this a unique work of art. The author, no doubt, has put his heart into these drawings. And that’s no wonder because “for him the agony and ecstasy of creation is what life is all about.” 

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