How sweet is my THALI?
"The thali is little India for in many ways it captures the joy we are able to extract from our untidy and chaotic pluralism." -Santosh Desai The following Communication Design project is based on the stereotypical representations of regional cuisine and the way it distorts our understanding of regional ethnic cultures of our country.Among the many cuisines that are stereotyped by modernization and one such is the Gujarati cuisine. Outsiders who have largely tasted Gujarati cuisine through the Gujarati thali have tended to popularize the stereotype of Gujarati cuisine as being essentially 'sweet'. Hence a quest of Finding an Authentic Gujarati Thali in this Cultural chaos of Gujarat's Gastronomy, and as the journey proceeds it unfolds stories and perspectives drawn from various parts of Gujarat. Gujarati thali which emerged as a commodity in the early 1900's when the home food was brought outside to serve basic needs. And overtime it has gained popularity across cultural boundaries, which hence questions its authenticity. Perhaps, a 'thali' which is a mere vessel can be identified as a complex structure, through which many individual narratives are reflected. Moreover, this quest also draws light upon the cultural stereotypes built over time, its historical connotations and how various ethnic roots are interweaved. The aim is to communicate aspects that are not looked upon, to understand and depict food beyond its consumption value through ethnographic approach and an attempt in joining the pieces which portrays stories through a documentary film.