This year’s festival office is a replica of the Museum’s gateways

Every year IFFK comes up with distinctive designs for its festival office, the nerve centre of its operations at the Kairali-Sree-Nila Theatre complex. If last year the façade of the office was a film projector and the year before that a kettuvallam (country boat), this year they’ve gone for a replica of the iconic gateways to the Museum compound, complete with its unique red brick ornamentation.

“We wanted to give a local flavour to this year’s design, something that would be instantly recognisable. Perhaps nothing stands out more than the architecture and ornamentation of the Napier museum and its two gateways [designed by British architect Robert Chisholm, the consulting architect of the Madras Government, circa. 1880],” say Hylesh Hyla Kumar, IFFK’s long time set designer and an associate of Soorya Krishnamoorthy. Hylesh has been designing IFFK’s festival office for some nine years now. “The façade of the replica gateway is made of plywood and took four days to make,” says Hylesh.

Joining the mood

It’s that time of the year when cinema is the talk of the city. The 11 theatres where the films are screened as part of IFFK are all spruced up for the week-long film fete with maintenance work and painting being done on a war-footing.

Among the lot, Sree Padmanabha theatre has gone a step ahead to add to the festival ambience. Welcoming the delegates to the theatre will be models of the mosque and church at Palayam, and Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple. “It is based on the theme of ‘unity in diversity’. The art work is done by Sreekariyam Anil. We are also laying a huge pookkalam on the premises,” says Girish Chandran, partner of the theatre. At last year’s IFFK, the theatre displayed cut-outs of six films, celebrating 100 years of Indian cinema.