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Must-visit travel spots for art lovers

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New Delhi, April 4: Go on a cruise or hop on a train or board a flight and travel to various destinations like London or Singapore to indulge in art, and merge with the picturesque places that host museums and galleries, say experts.

Ratna Chadha, Chief Executive, TIRUN, India representative for Celebrity Cruises, and Gursahib Singh Sethi, Co-Founder, travel app Travkart.com, suggest a few places:

* London, England:

London-England-2

The Victoria and Albert Museum in London showcases applied arts from around the world, including furniture, jewellery, fashion, glasswork, ceramics and sculpture. The Tate Britain is another art museum you must visit when you make a trip to London. The building contains the largest collection of British art in the world, with pieces dating from the 1500s to modern times. The National Gallery, located in Trafalgar square, is also a delight to visit as it hosts over 2,300 works of art. Cruise enthusiasts can visit the National Maritime Museum in Greater London to browse through paintings that focus on the many moods of the sea and the travails of navigation.

* Florence, Italy:

Florence, Italy

The Galleria dell’Accademia houses the renowned ‘David’ by Michelangelo, besides other sculptures by the artist and a collection of breath-taking Renaissance paintings. The Uffizi, on the other hand, is located near the sparkling Arno River and must be visited if you wish to behold the world’s most fascinating collection of Italian Renaissance art. Very close to the Uffizi gallery is the Loggia dei Lanzi, an open-air museum that showcases antique sculptures. Built in the 14th century, this museum is very easily accessible as it requires no entry fee.

* Singapore:

singapore

The best Asian contemporary art can be enjoyed at the Singapore Art Museum, which was inaugurated in 1996. Pay a visit to the National Gallery to indulge in an extensive collection of Singaporean and Southeast Asian art that dates from the 19th century, all the way down to modern times. Another building that houses priceless pieces of art is the Peranakan Museum, dedicated to the culture of Peranakans – descendants of Straits Born Chinese. The items displayed at the museum include carved wedding bands and stunning ceremonial costumes.

* Aarhus, Denmark:

aarhus-denmark

Aarhus is Denmark’s second-largest city and a buzzing cultural hub. A walk down the city’s streets will lead you to discover a seemingly endless number of galleries where you can spend hours browsing through art. The ARoS Aarhus Kunstmuseum, established in 1859, is one of the largest art museums in Northern Europe. You can visit the ten-storey building to observe the museum’s large art collection as well as special exhibitions of Danish artists. The roof of the museum features an iconic rainbow panorama basement, while the gallery in the basement is influenced by Dante’s The Divine Comedy.

* Paris, France:

paris-france1

History and art are present at every corner of the city, and vacationers can begin with a visit to the Musée Carnavalet, which is a tribute to the history of Paris. The Musée Picasso, as the name suggests, allows one to browse through the works of Pablo Picasso and the Maison Européenne de la Photographie is dedicated to modern photographic art. Visitors also throng the famous Louvre museum, which has become a central landmark of the city. Another art museum, the Musée d’Orsay, showcases works by remarkable artists including Van Gogh, Manet, Cezanne and Renoir.
* The block printing art and fresco paintings on Havelis of Mandawa, Fatehpur, and Nawal garh are sure to mesmerize those exploring Rajasthan.

* Those travelling to south, will get a chance to experience the awe inspiring paintings with subtle colours, detailed refinement and gesso work depicting the scenes from Hindu mythology. The brilliant art skills carried out on clothes in Mysore will surely mesmerize the art enthusiast.

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Entertainment

‘Skyscraper’ Review: A lowbrow, watchable thriller

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Dwayne Johnson Skyscraper

New Delhi, July 20: Film: “Skyscraper”; Director: Rawson Marshall Thurber

Cast: Dwayne Johnson, Neve Campbell, Chin Han, Roland Moller, Noah Taylor, Byron Mann, Pablo Schreiber and Hannah Quinlivan;

Rating: ** (2 stars out of 5)

Despite being visually exciting, suspenseful and entertaining, “Skyscraper” is a lowbrow, one-dimensional, fun B-grade action thriller that is absolutely worth a watch.

The premise is simple and the plot is predictably straight laced. Will Sawyer (Dwayne Johnson), an ex-military operative who has lost his leg in an explosion, now owns a security company that has been appointed to service ‘The Pearl’, the tallest building in the world, built by the Asian Financier Zhao Long Ji (Chin Han).

Fit with the latest security measures, the building seems insurmountable, till a group of mercenaries led by Kores Botha (Roland Moller) try to sabotage the building by burning it down because of their differences with Zhao Long Ji.

Sawyer’s stakes in saving the building are doubled as his wife Sarah and two children; Georgia and Henry, are stranded in the blazing skyscraper. How he rescues his family and Zhao and saves the building from being completely destroyed, forms the crux of the film.

The film is serious at times with by-the-numbers, over-the-top set action pieces and a few little twists here and there that defy expectations. The audience may find the set pieces to be incredibly entertaining, but in actuality, they don’t particularly mesh with the narrative. But then, as an action film it delivers the goods.

Overall, the film is Dwayne’s canvas. He entices the audience with his jaw-dropping stunts especially when he is dangling outside the building with nothing but a rope and wrapped prosthetic leg keeping him alive, the notion of “suspension of disbelief” only goes so far to save it.

He and Neve Campbell, who plays his wife Sarah, have surprisingly solid chemistry and together they as a couple make the telling of the film relatable. The kids are there to tug you on the emotional note, which definitely seems forced.

Overall, the film delivers on pretty much everything it promises and even adds a layer of emotion when looking at the family dynamics.

In fact, it even tries to reach the levels that the original “Die Hard” did, but then the ridiculous dialogue at the end – “You nearly need a shower” belittles Sawyer’s endeavour and takes away from the seriousness of the events one witnessed.

IANS

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Startups News

Google ‘Launchpad Accelerator’ India chapter to nurture desi startups

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google

New Delhi, July 10: In a bid to nurture Indian startups working in the fields of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML), Google on Tuesday announced to open the India chapter of its global “Launchpad Accelerator” mentorship programme.

The three-month “Launchpad Accelerator” India programme has been designed to grow the AI/ML ecosystem by helping desi startups build scalable solutions for the country’s unique problems.

The programme, based out of Bengaluru, will provide a cohort of 8-10 Indian startups mentorship and support from the best of Google in AI/ML, Cloud, UX, Android, web, product strategy and marketing, along with up to $100K of Google Cloud credits, the company said in a statement.

“India has the appetite to build entrepreneurs of the future and we are proud to announce a focused programme for the next wave of Indian entrepreneurs, who are using new technologies to solve the country’s needs,” said Roy Glasberg, Global Launchpad Founder.

Over the years, Google has worked with some incredible startups across India who are using advanced technologies such as AI/ML to tackle everything from agri-tech to language web, healthcare and transportation.

“With the dedicated India-only Launchpad Accelerator programme, we will be able to build a bridge between startups and the industry ecosystem and support them to drive innovation in the India market,” Glasberg added.

Applications for the first class is open till July 31 and the first class will start in September 2018.

In an effort to mentor emerging start-ups, Google India hosted a four-day boot camp for the first 10 Indian startups as part of its ‘Solve for India’ programme.

The India-focused accelerator programme is building on Google’s “Solve for India” roadshow from last year.

Ten Indian startups were shortlisted from across India which underwent four days in one-on-one consults with experts from Google and mentors from the industry to solve critical product and growth challenges.

“We shortlisted 10 startups from 160 home-grown start-ups by travelling across 15 cities in India, and are now ready to scale this pilot as a dedicated programme for India,” Karthik Padmanabhan, Developer Relations Lead, Google India, said at that time.

The participants were the founders of startups including Nebulaa, Slang Labs, PregBuddy, LegalDesk, PaySack, Vokal, FarMart, Meesho, Pratilipi and M-Indicator.

“Launchpad” regional accelerators are tailored specifically to their local markets, helping startups build great products, Google said.

IANS

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Fuel prices hiked for fifth consecutive day

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Petrol Price

New Delhi July 9: Petrol and diesel prices on Monday hiked for the fifth consecutive day, according to the Indian Oil Corporation data.

Petrol is being sold in Delhi at Rs.76.36 per litre, as against Rs.76.13 on Sunday, while diesel is being sold at Rs.68.07 per litre, as against Rs. 67.86 on the previous day.

While in Mumbai, petrol prices increased from Rs. 83.52 on Sunday, to Rs. 83.75 per litre on Monday, and diesel prices from Rs.72 to Rs. 72.23 per litre.

Members of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) last month, agreed to jointly increase oil production, which was estimated to be about one million barrels a day.

The deal, which came after days of negotiation, was reportedly aimed at easing fears of a global supply crunch.

WeForNews 

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