Village Voice News

2024 Jaipur Literature Festival: an artsy affair to promote ‘literary tourism’

Synopsis: The 17th Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 Series Jaipur Literature Festival returned to Hotel Clarks Amer from February 1st to 5th, 2024, promising its distinctive blend of flavour, substance, and magnitude. This iconic event united writers, readers, aficionados, influencers, and intellectuals, embodying the essence of literary camaraderie and cultural exchange. With its hallmark diversity and scale, the festival served as a vibrant platform for dialogue, exploration, and celebration of literature in all its forms. It is an enriching and inspiring literary experience amidst the majestic backdrop of Jaipur’s rich heritage.

The vibrant city of Jaipur came alive on February 1 as the 17th instalment of the highly anticipated Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) kicked off. With a resounding call to embrace “literary tourism,” the event celebrated the diverse array of genres, languages, and cultures. Under the honourable inauguration of Rajasthan’s Deputy Chief Minister, Diya Kumari, the five-day festival provided an immersive and enlightening experience for all.

The annual literary event at Hotel Clarks Amer witnessed the participation of about 550 speakers and artists from across the world, representing a diverse array of voices and perspectives. The attendees got to delve into literature, insightful discussions, musical performances, art installations, merchandise, local cuisine, and more. Visitors from around the world planned their trips to coincide with the festival, recognizing it as an opportunity to immerse themselves in the vibrant culture of the desert state. One notable aspect of this event was its dedication to being environmentally friendly, motivating organizers to replicate its eco-conscious practices, which could also be spotted at various corners of the venue where art pieces made from waste were installed!

In addition to the literary sessions, the festival also hosted the Jaipur Music Stage, showcasing enthralling performances by top artists and musical talents spanning various genres, including folk, jazz, and classical. This year’s lineup includes names like Prabh Deep and When Chai Met Toast, which made the crowd go ga-ga over their performances.

One of the key highlights was the painting ‘Elephants Can Fly’, Abhishek Singh’s live art at Jaipur Lit Fest, which he continued to paint for over three days. His live visual tapestry was an attempt to celebrate all things nature—”especially the beautiful animals that are the ambassadors of nature,” he mentioned.

The festival hosted 376 speakers from across different nationalities as well as major award winners, such as the Booker, the International Booker, the Pulitzer, the Sahitya Akademi, Padma Shree, Padma Bhushan, Padma Vibhushan, the JCB Prize for Literature, and many more. The most prominent names included Abhay K, Amish, Arundhathi Subramaniam, Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, Gulzar, Hernan Diaz, Kanan Gill, Neha Jhalani Hiranandani, Kelly Dorji, Maria Goretti, Namita Gokhale, Raghuram G. Rajan, Sudha Murthy, Sutapa Sikdar, Vir Sanghvi, Vishal Bhardwaj, and many more.

Attendees also got a chance to meet and greet their favourite authors, as there were many book launches at the festival, including ‘Chabiyan Umeedon Ki’ by Mamta Pandit, iParent by Neha Jhalani Hiranandani, ‘Another Lens: Photography and the Emergence of Image Culture (Volume 4)’ edited by Rahaab Allana, ‘Ammu’ by Asma Khan, ‘Shakuntala’s Daughter’ by Itirani Samanta, ‘Acts of God’ by Kannan Gill, and many more.

The most vibrant area of the festival was Nand Ghar Bagaan! It was a sheer delight for 5 days as attendees got to delve into the vibrant beats of the local bands, the insightful talks, and hands-on workshops! It was filled with so many cultural activities, such as face painting, henna designs, a 360° camera, a photo booth, aesthetic decorations, live traditional music, dance, an artistic workshop, and sessions, along with so much more to learn and do.

Finally, the expansive bookstore operated by Crossword appeared to be bustling every day of the five-day event. Exploring this literary extravaganza, their pop-up store provided a sanctuary to uncover works by acclaimed authors and beyond.

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