Glimpses From the ‘Come-Back Year’ of Kala Ghoda Arts Festival 2016

We haven’t missed Kala Ghoda Arts Festival (KGAF) in the last 11 years. At least a couple of visits to this 9-day festival is a must for us ever since we came to Mumbai. There was a talk of KGAF getting cancelled due to the local residents’ complaints about noise pollution and safety. But we guess the art lovers did all they can for that not to happen. Increased security and fewer loudspeakers became a norm. Wish noise pollution during religious festivals also is handled the same way.

Also, after Hindustan Times became the title sponsors, the festival had lost its charm to some extent. But 2016, we felt, is sort of come-back year for KGAF.

Every year, we click so many photos and never use those. So this year, we went to the fest without cameras. With no intention of clicking photos or writing a blog, we enjoyed the various performances (whatever we could, considering the sheer number of events and that some of the good ones happened at different venues at the same time), met friends, devoured all sorts of delicacies, and generally had a great time.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival

KGAF 2016 ended on February 14th (though the food festival and cultural evenings as part of Make in India – Mumbai Week continued till February 17).  And we felt we should write at least one blog about this well-organized festival, saluting the efforts that went into planning and executing this exuberant celebration of art of all forms.

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Kala Ghoda Arts Festival

Events happen at multiple venues but the installations used to be in and around Art Plaza in Kala Ghoda area. This year, there are installations in Cross Maidan too, which only hosted music and dance programmes until last year. Cross Maidan also hosts the Food and Crafts Festival from February 6 – 17 as part of Make in India– Mumbai Week.

Glimpses from Arts Plaza and Cross Maidan

A thought-provoking installation by Vikram Arora at Art Plaza – Food for Thought.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival Vikram Arora

Canadian chef Samuel Lavergne-Fournier prepares salmon gravlax, fruit chutney, candied cashews, bread pudding, and vanilla Bourbon caramel sauce.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival Samuel Lavergne-Fournier

Canadian Chef Samuel Lavergne-Fournier (Photo Courtesy KGAF)

Panchmahabhutam, a combination of Bharatanatyam, Kathak, and Mohiniattam by Nalanada Nrityakala Mahavidyalya and conceptualized by Padmabhushan Dr. Kanak Rele explains that despite the variations and the vagaries of nature, humans survive because of Mother Earth’s blessings.

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Brahmand, by Dr. Sandhya V Pureccha and team, is a Bharatanatyam recital of devotional poems written by lesser-known women saints of Maharashtra.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival 2016

Brahmand, by Dr. Sandhya V Pureccha and team. Photo Courtesy KGAF

A cooking competition in progress.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival

An impromptu performance by NSPA musicians. Heartwarming folk songs.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival

Kanisha Pottery by Sheetal (a third-generation potter) had clay pots and water bottles, a healthy addition to our kitchens.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival Kanisha Pottery

Gondhraj strawberry lemonade from Grandma Mookerjee’s Kitchen.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival Grandma Mookherjee's Kitchen

An attempt by Kanika Bawa, an interior designer, to bring Kolhapuri chappals into mainstream fashion.

Kala Ghoda Arts Festival

Hariprasad Chaurasia, as part of Make India Celebrations

Hariprasad Chaurasia, as part of Make India Celebrations

The Kala Ghoda Arts Festival is an annual community celebration of arts within one of the most beautiful and historic precincts of  Mumbai, The Kala Ghoda Art District.

 

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