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The Passion of The “Poster Man”!

The Passion of The “Poster Man”!

Sudipta Chanda with the post of The Great Gambler
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A professional’s passion to cling to an apparently obsolete mode of communication reveals that not everything of the past is lost

We have already heard of poster boy in the film industry whose job is as varied as the man himself. Even, we are aware of the title ‘Poster Boy’ attributed to some for their unique role.

But Poster Man ? In this age of social media and high speed internet, several modes of communication are fast turning to be obsolete. Poster is among one of them which is losing its relevance as people are increasingly resorting to Whatsapp, Instagram, Twitter or Facebook to reach their target audience or access their material.

However, notwithstanding the current trend, there are some avid and passionate professionals who are bent on responding to their heart when it comes to mark their professional footprints loud and clear.

Sudipta Chanda is one such professional whose passion with posters is not only remarkable, but speaks to ample dedication and determination to set a new trending.

Chanda who is based out of Kolkata, recently spoke to EastIndiaStory in a freewheeling interview. Here go below some excerpts of the same.

Sudipta Chanda with the poster of Amne Samne from his collection
Sudipta Chanda with the poster of “Amne Samne” from his collection

Why do you collect posters?

I consider posters as piece of art. It must be preserved for generation next, for it talks about our taste of culture, quality of artistry, evolution of printing technology and one of very important documents for film studies. It’s  very important to know our past in any social structure. and besides all these posters are eye catching.

What are the challenges that you face… ?

I work with very limited availability of material. As for original posters,  the question of making them available after a point of time is limited. As a result, they become highly expensive. Most of the old film distributors have shut down their businesses; naturally, sources have turned scarce.

Preserving posters is also a tricky task. Old papers have every chances of getting damaged if they are not carefully handled. So one has to be extremely cautious and ensure their proper handling.

What are your sources or how do you collect them?

First of all, I started collecting posters from old film distributors in Kolkata. I bought my first poster while I was in college during 2000. It was Big B’s ” The Great Gambler”.

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Lithographed posters were not in vogue back then. Digitally processed posters were already introduced at that time. Gradually, I came to know about some of the noted old film distributors from the city, like Daga Films, Rajashree, Musicals and so on. After some point of time I found there was nothing left that I was looking for.

Then, I started collecting posters from cities like Mumbai, Delhi. Eventually, I’ve built my stock and the drive is still on.

Sudipta Chanda with the poster of Teesri Manzil from his collection
Sudipta Chanda with the poster of “Teesri Manzil” from his collection

What are your future plans… ?

I have already showcased two big exhibitions in Kolkata — Bachchan Nama to celebrate Big B’s 75 th birthday while Pancham Nama to celebrate R.D.Burman’s 80th birthday in the recent past.

Besides,  I have accessed calendars  published on Bengal’s matinee idol Uttam Kumar featuring his film posters , another calendar on Big B featuring 50 posters to commemorate his 50 years in industry and calendar on Satyajit Ray’s film posters to celebrate his birth centenary year which was released by Sandip Ray.

Some publications have already approached me to come up with some film publicity material related books. I am already on the job of the same. This apart, I intend to host more exhibitions in near future.

Also Read: My Maiden Brush With `Feluda’ 

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