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Who is Rajeev Sethi? The art historian who asked Neeraj Chopra about his sex life

He is the founder of The Asian Heritage Foundation and the Rajeev Sethi Scenographers. He is also the man behind the transformation of the Mumbai Airport's Terminal 2.

‘Art historian’ Rajeev Sethi made Neeraj Chopra extremely uncomfortable during an Indian Express event by asking the Olympic Gold Medalist about his sex life. Chopra was visibly disgusted and sarcastically responded that his heart was overwhelmed by the question.

There is significant outrage against Rajeev Sethi on social media, with abuses flying over his unorthodox line of questioning.

Who is Rajeev Sethi?

According to his website, Rajeev Sethi is “South Asia’s leading designer and is noted internationally for his innovative contribution to preserving and celebrating the subcontinent’s rich cultural heritage.”

It adds, “For more than 35 years, through his work in design and architecture, performances and festivals, exhibitions and publication, policy and program, he has identified ways to bring contemporary relevance to traditional skills of vulnerable artisan communities and creative professionals. With innovative positioning and proactive interventions he has created a basis for the maintenance of time honored legacy industries in an era of industrial mass production and globalization.”

The designer spent his formative years at Paris in France and “was mentored by designers like Ray and Charles Eames and eminent Gandhians like Mrs Chottapadhya and Pupul Jayakar who encouraged him to direct his talents to India.”

He is the founder of The Asian Heritage Foundation and the Rajeev Sethi Scenographers. He is also the man behind the transformation of the Mumbai Airport’s Terminal 2.

According to transfuze, “In 2002, he was the scenographer and production partner for the Smithsonian Folklife Festival The Silk Road: Connecting Cultures, Creating Trust. He designed participatory installations for the Universal Forum of Cultures in Barcelona (2004) and the Basic Needs Pavilion at the Hanover World EXPO (2000). His film and theater credits include art directing Joan Littlewood’s Bijou, art advising Peter Brook’s Mahabharata, and directing Ariane Mnouchkine’s L’Inde de père en fils, de mere en fille. He was the curator for installations at the Jaya He! GVK New Museum in the Mumbai International Airport, and conceived JIYO, a World Bank program to improve the livelihoods of rural Indian artisans.”

In addition to that, Sethi has worked at three exhibitions of the Smithsonian Institute, namely “India: Mela!,” “Aditi: A Celebration of Life,” and “The Golden Eye: An International Tribute to the Artisans of India.” Also, he is the first recipient of the INTACH Indira Gandhi Lifetime Achievement Award for Conservation of Cultural Heritage (2010), the Order of Merit from Germany (2001), and the Padma Bhushan under the Congress Government in 1985.

The Neeraj Chopra controversy

Rajeev Sethi exclaimed before Neeraj Chopra, “What a handsome young man you are!” Then he went on to ask, “How do you maintain a balance between your sex life and athletic training? I know this is a weird question.”

Rajeev Sethi did not stop there and proceeded to elaborate his question in further detail, expressing a great desire to know more about the Gold Medalist’s sex life.

 

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Staff reporter at OpIndia

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