Compiled by Ruwini Jayawardana
Forty years of Alliance francaise in Kandy
The Alliance francaise de Kandy will celebrate 40 years of service in
Kandy with a photographic exhibition, "Paris, the Other Half", by Janaka
A former student of Alliance francaise de Kandy, Janaka Samarakoon
has been in France since 2002. He is currently reading for his Master's
degree in the School of Louvre, Paris, the prestigious institution
affiliated to the world's largest museum, the Louvre. Before entering
the Ecole du Louvre, he graduated from the University of Montpellier in
History of Art and Archaeology.
He has participated in several group exhibitions in Paris. Last year,
during the C‚zanne exhibition that was organised by the Alliance fran‡aise
de Kandy to celebrate the 100th death anniversary of the French painter
Paul C‚zanne, he exhibited a series of photographic landscapes of C‚zanne's
"Paris, l'autre part" (Paris, The Other Half) which reunites a series
of recent photographs is his first solo exhibition. The "Other half" of
Paris is that of the day - night.
The "Other Half "is also that other Paris, often passed unnoticed by
the tourists, dazzled by the breathtaking beauty of "mainstream" sites
which make Paris the most visited city in the world. Janaka's lens
deliberately snubs that conventional beauty of the City of Lights.
Instead, he lingers in front of trivial settings that nothing so
special captures the passer-by's eye. What those "trivial" shots make
not so commonplace clich‚s that they appear to be are their thoroughly
geometrical compositions, intentionally balanced centring and above all,
the warmth of the lighting that the photographer extracts out of the
Janaka Samarakoon's Paris is often a melancholically empty city; its
inhabitants, schematised to mere pictorial elements, are measuredly
blurred while been faded into the background. What rises up above those
miniature creatures so vehemently is what they built, the man-made city:
'Paris, The Other Half' will be opened by Ambassador of France in Sri
Lanka and Maldives Michel Lummaux, on November 23 at 6.30 p.m. The
exhibition continues till November 30.
Exhibition of paintings at Lionel Wendt
Ruwani Perera, a talented young artist, presents with a new vision,
wildlife paintings and 3D temple paintings at her third solo exhibition
of oil paintings which will be held from November 25 to 27 at the Lionel
Wendt Art Centre.
Rohan Pethiyagoda, the Managing Director of Wildlife Heritage Trust
of Sri Lanka, is the gust of honour at the opening ceremony.
Ruwani's themes cover all topics though she admits a strong
preference for wildlife and nature. Ruwani is an artist dedicated to
retain, a realistic quality in her work, to give a viewer, that he or
she is actually a witness to the scene.
By gaining inspiration from the natural world she accurately presents
the animals and birds in their natural habitat.
Ruwani's creations will be on display at Lionel Wendt Art Centre on
25th November from 10.30 a.m. to 6.30 p.m. and November 26 and 27 from
9.30 a.m. to 6.30 p.m.
Vying for local 007:
The Aasai Mang Piyambanna star sheds light in his flight to fame
There is no doubt about it. His striking features and killer smile
can give any superstar a run for his money. The role of the romantic
hero fits him like a glove as it does to SRK, Hrithik Roshan, Brad Pitt
and Leonardo di Caprio. Roshan Ranawana, the dazzling youth of the
silver screen, spills his thoughts in an exclusive interview with Art &
How did you start off as an actor?
I had no plans to join the cinema scene. It was my mother who filled
and sent the application for Udayakantha Warnasuriya's Hiripoda Vessa.
At one period local films were made just for the sake of making
films. They were low quality and shooting was concluded in five or six
days. Later some good directors joined in and now some interesting films
have come up.
The cinema industry is once again on an upward climb. Recal your
first experience in front of a camera. What was the scene and how did
It was a part of a dance item which I did with the other leading
actors. It is a scene in the theme song.
I have done commercials before so I was used to posing in front of
However it was a challenge to work with a director of repute in one
of his biggest projects.
How supportive are your family and friends?
Pictures by Saman Sri Wedage
My mother is the driving force behind all my achievements. She has
paved the way for me. I became Mr. Sri Lanka in 2002 due to her
influence. I represented Sri Lanka in the 'Man Hunt International'
Competition in China and won seventh place.
Next I took part in the 'Mr World' contest in England and the
'Grassime International' competition in 2003. I was elected for the
'Best Model of the World' contest in 2003 and clinched third place and I
was amongst the 10 finalists in the 'Mr. International' competition in
2006. Honestly I am a person who is a bit towards the negative side and
a bit backward.
Tell us about your roles related to the small screen.
My first tele drama is Vasuda. Then I took part in a few other
creations like Sanda Nudutu Sanda, Gama Thamath Sundarai Revathi,
Sonduru Ruwathiya, Kavya etc.
Dhammika Siriwardena's Sindangana is coming up.
What are the future films in store for you?
We have completed
shooting Sanjaya Nirmal's Rosa Kelae. I act opposite another Indian
actress named Monica in that. It will be released next year. Shooting
has yet to commence in Suranga de Alwis' Prema Poojasanaya and Buddhi
Keerthisena's 'Pale Blue'. 'Pale Blue' is an action drama.
Rosa Kelae provided a totally new experience for me. I loved it
because I had to work with 35 children. It was family oriented and we
had a lot of fun on and off the set.
With Anarkali Aakarsha in Hiripoda Vessa
Though Monica is only 19 she is a very experienced actress. She had
been in the field since she was four. My heart felt heavy once the
shooting concluded. I miss the kids and our time together.
If you were given a chance to portray any character in any film which
existed so far which would you choose?
(Smiling) I have a passion to portray James Bond.
How is the response for Praveen's role?
Quite good. Aasai Mang Piyambanna brought the highest income brought
by a film in Sri Lankan history in its first two weeks. That itself
shows the public's interest towards the movie.
Let us have a close look at your roles in your three movies so far.
Prageeth (Hiri- poda Vessa), Mahasen (Tharaka Mal) and Praveen (Aasai
Mang Piyambanna). Handsome, rich, town bread guys who strike a
relationship with the leading actress(es) of the movie. Are you going to
limit your talents to these roles?
(Smiling) Yes, I know what you are getting at. These roles are
designed by the directors. They were all good and interesting movies. My
fans will see me in different roles in the movies scheduled for the
Tell us about Pooja.
That was the first time I got a chance to act with an Indian actress.
She is friendly, professional and it was very easy working with her.
There was a lot to learn from her. Any memorable moments on set which
you can recall?
Mmm... We went through a tough period while shooting Aasai Mang
Piyambanna. It was raining hard and both Pooja and I became ill but all
the hard work was worthwhile as the final results were fruitful.
Describe yourself in three words.
Sensitive... sensitive... very sensitive...(thinking) independent and
If you were given a chance to start all over again would you still
choose to be an actor?
Yeah. I wanted to become a scientist during school time but destiny
did not allow me to become one. I want to be a better actor than I am at
With Pooja Umashankar in Aasai Mang Piyambanna
How do you spend your leisure time?
I go to the gym, watch a movie or go on a trip with my friends.
Is there anything you do as a habit?
I think I blink my eyes too much! And I run my hands through my hair
on both sides in front of a mirror before going out.
What scares you most?
Rats and firecrackers! Any thing which makes a huge racket. An
article once stated that I am scared of leeches but that is wrong. I am
not scared of them. I had to flip one off my shoulder in one of my
Are you involved in any type of social activity?
I am a member of the Leo Club, Wellawatta. We are still in the
process of organising a programme targeted at helping people who are in
need. I would like to invite people to help us by joining us in this
With Nadeesha Hemamali in Tharaka Mal
Tell me about your first love experience.
(Grinning) I have had crushes but I have never had an affair. I have
moved around with lots of girls during school time but they were all
I am very serious on the matter of love. It is no joke. I wish to
have a steady relationship which eventually ends in marriage. I am
waiting for the right girl. Right now my career is my main focus. I want
to excel in that area.
Do you believe that love is a once-in-a-life experience?
Yes, it needs to be like that but yet again it does not always happen
in that way for everyone. If you do not recognise it properly it can end
Are you a romantic person?
(Shrugging) I don't know...(coyly) I might be if I have the right
person by my side (laughs). I really don't know. I haven't got that
What characteristics do you look for in your future partner?
Understanding, honesty, kindness... and she should possess a very
Most local and foreign stars hesitate to bring their partners into
the limelight because they are afraid of losing their fans. Do you share
No, I don't. If you look at celebrities like Shah Ruk Khan and
Hrithik Roshan they are married and have kids. Their fan base has not
What is the nicest thing a fan had done for you?
Every time a photo of mine appears on a cover page or article, one of
my fans sends me a pencil sketch of exactly the same picture. I have
framed them and kept them in my room. It is very touching.
What do you have to say to your fans?
My fans give me strength and courage. They mean a lot to me and I
love them a lot. They are the ones who have brought me success and my
journey in the field will be decided by them. If you see me please come
and speak with me. I am not a proud person.
Full Name: Roshan Ranawana
Date of Birth: 1981, March 25
Schools: St. Joseph's, Maradana, and Asian
International School, Ward Place
Family: Father - Tony Massillamany (former rugby
player now owns a colour lab),
Mother - Kanthi Ranawana, younger brother - Chanaka
(engaged in higher studies in Australia)
Favourite actor: Sanath Gunatilleke and Kamal
Favourite actress: Sabitha Perera
Favourite food: Vegetarian food
Least favourite food: I do not eat meat products
Favourite slogan: Newton's third law - for every
action there is an equal and opposite reaction
Address: 259/7, St. Andrew's Place, Handela, Wattala