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Lounge Loves: Typewriter art, refreshing mixers and more

This list includes a motorsport journalist's latest book and an interesting advertisement with no dialogue or voiceover

Typewriter artist James Cook
Typewriter artist James Cook

The art types

I was introduced to typewriter artist James Cook’s work a few months ago and was mighty impressed: Cook creates landscapes, architecture, and recreates old masterpieces, including the Mona Lisa, all using only a typewriter and paper. But remembering Paul Smith, the American typewriter artist who lived and created with cerebral palsy until the age of 85, I filed Cook away as just a follower doing typewriter art. However, I recently realised that Cook brings some fun to his pieces, filling each with details only discerning observers can discover: in recreations of Van Gogh’s works for example, he mainly uses only letters from the artist’s name; in a portrait of Shakespeare, he’s littered in names of the bard’s plays. Just this week, Cook opened up his online shop for pre-orders. If nothing else, the site is worth a visit. —Vangmayi Parakala

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Summer sipping

Absolut’s new non-alcoholic mixers
Absolut’s new non-alcoholic mixers

It was one of those arbitrary finds on Blinkit, the saviour of chaotic households and repository of curious objects (its current inventory shows items as varied as a multicoloured wig for Holi and George Orwell’s 1984). Not gonna lie, sometimes I scroll the app just for fun, and during one such trip down its rabbit hole, I found Absolut’s new non-alcoholic mixers that have become a summer favourite, with or without a dash of something stronger. Both flavours, Lime & Mint and Raspberry & Lemon, are light, fizzy and utterly refreshing, while being considerably low on sugar. The raspberry-flavoured one is especially a favourite because of its unusual flavour profile, and it goes beautifully with a juniper-forward gin. —Shrabonti Bagchi

A racing companion

Stuart Codling’s 2023 book The Formula 1 Drive To Survive Unofficial Companion
Stuart Codling’s 2023 book The Formula 1 Drive To Survive Unofficial Companion

The Netflix reality series Formula 1: Drive To Survive got many of us hooked to Formula One. But those who don’t like to watch the F1 action unfold on the screen, and would rather find excitement in words and pictures, should try and get their hands on Stuart Codling’s 2023 book The Formula 1 Drive To Survive Unofficial Companion. In this slightly smaller than a coffee-table book, Codling, a motorsport journalist and broadcaster, delves into the stars, strategies, technology (including the jargon) and cars that make F1 one of the most followed motorsports globally. There’s also a chapter on F1 history that looks at the sport’s journey through 20 cars. Whether you are a seasoned viewer of the sport or a rookie F1 follower, the book makes for a lovely addition to any sports fan’s shelf. —Nitin Sreedhar

The sound of steel

 A still from Jindal Steel's new advertisement
A still from Jindal Steel's new advertisement

At a screening of Yodha last week, I was doing my best to ignore the usual ads and promos that play before the film starts. But then something started that I hadn’t seen before, and which seemed more like a short film or a music video. It turned out to be an advertisement for Jindal Steel (it’s on their YouTube channel). Directed by Ayappa K.M., there’s no dialogue or voiceover, just cascading, eye-popping images of steel being used in a plethora of ways: weights, sickles, fans, basketball hoops, balance beams, sewing machines, artificial limbs, bridges. This two-minute montage is perfectly synced to Sneha Khanwalkar’s clanging, ringing score. It ends, simply, with two intertitles: “the sound of India” and “the steel of India”.—Uday Bhatia

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