They are among the most striking works in Mumbai artist Sameer Kulavoor’s impressive new show, You Are All Caught Up. 58 and I Like It. What Is It? remind us that we spend most of our lives glued to screens, consuming and being consumed by food, caffeine, work, news, information, rumour. The show examines the impact, both physical and psychological, of social media on our lives (read the review on mintlounge.in), but many of the canvases just as easily tell the story of our dependence on screens.
Responding to that constant call of the screen is a clear source of stress, and this state of always being “on” is something we explore in our cover story this week, through the lens of startup founders. Entrepreneurs are caught up in 16-hour workdays, responsible for everything from building a product and selling it to ensuring the electricity bill is paid and the taxes filed. Early struggles are worn as a badge of honour, but their psychological toll is rarely discussed in a world where it’s important to project success and optimism. “Founder depression” is real and affects more people than we are aware of.
Despite the struggle, entrepreneurship is an opportunity for expression, to solve a problem, to build “something on my own”, and the pandemic has provided a chance for founders to do just that. In smaller cities, from Palakkad to Shillong, people may not be dining out due to covid-19 restrictions but they are ordering in more—and there has been a burst of cloud kitchens to cater to the need for home-delivered food, explains another story in this issue. There’s a dark and a bright side to everything—the key is striking a balance.
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