Report by Santanu Ganguly, New Delhi: Rich tributes were paid to the Russian painter Nicholas Roerich at a launch of and discussion on Niyogi Books’ new publication Nicholas Roerich: A Quest & A Legacy, edited by renowned short story writer, ManjuKak at the India International Centre (IIC), New Delhi on last evening.
Organised jointly by the IIC and Niyogi Books, the function was attended by Dr. Karan Singh, former Union Minister and President, ICCR as the Chief Guest and His Excellency Alexander M.Kadakin, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to India as the Guest of Honour.
Nicholas Roerich: A Quest & A Legacyis a collection of 21 scholarly articles on the master painter who continues to arouse the interest of extensive scholarship and effectively presents Roerich’s life and multifaceted personality.
Through these writings, one hopes to come to a holistic understanding of the man and his times.
According to Dr. Karan Singh the massive corpus of Roerich’s work presents a unique dimension of spiritual striving and realization, which will remain a source of inspiration for many years to come. It was time now that we should rediscover the genius of Nicholas Roerich and revisit the saga of his amazing life. Roerich’s body of work has been divided into three periods by some critics, says ManjuKak and adds that his first, the Russian period, the second,the theatrical period and the third, the ‘mountain’ phase are the three distinct phases presented in the book. Through his body of work Roerich advocated a return to the ancient roots of human wisdom, which asserted the importance of spiritual life and of peaceful co-existence based on cosmic mentality.
The Editor, Manju Kak, the editor has been particularly drawn to Himalayan ethnography and culture and has researched and curated exhibitions on the subject.She has also directed a documentary film, They Who Walked Mountains about the erstwhile salt trade routes from India to Tibet. Her fiction, essays and articles have appeared in newspapers, journals anthologies and magazines in India and abroad.
The Publisher, Niyogi Books has, in a short span of time, established itself as a publisher of fine illustrated books. Starting out in 2004, it has about 200 books on its active list. Niyogi Books is recognised for its high-qualityillustrated books on a range of subjects from art and photography to heritage, culture and the history ofSouth Asia. These books have won several awards and prizes including those from the Federation ofIndian Publishers. Some of its books have been shortlisted for the Man Asian Literary Prize and the Vodafone-Crossword Book Award.
Nicholas Roerich: A Quest & A Legacy
Publisher: Niyogi Books
Hardbound with dust jacket
Price: INR 1495/-