HTKGAF 2018: Saying goodbye with a smile
With 102 visual art installations to see and 560 events to attend, everyone comes away with a good memorymumbai Updated: Feb 11, 2018 23:00 IST
Thousands thronged the Kala Ghoda art district to tour the installations, watch plays, attend film screenings and soak in performances one last time, on the final day of the Hindustan Times Kala Ghoda Arts Festival, 2018.
“I had heard a lot about this year’s art installations from friends and I was eager to check them out,” said Tanvi Mungekar, 18, a college student from Thane visiting the festival for the first time. “Each one was marvellous. I wish I had come a few days earlier.”
As the sun set, the action shifted to the Asiatic Library steps, as actor Rani Mukerji arrived to bring the curtains down on the nine-day cultural extravaganza.
“As I took selfies with cops backstage, I was reminded of shooting Mardaani at this very location,” said the actor, looking radiant in a black poncho. Moments later, she also introduced the audience to her upcoming film, Hichki, which marks her comeback post-motherhood.
“The film is about overcoming odds and weaknesses with a strong spirit,” she said. “What’s amazing about the festival is that people from around the world visit. It feels amazing to stand on the platform among so many artistes showcasing their talent here.”
Mukerji thrilled her audience by taking a giant groupfie against the crowd too.
Also present on stage were Nitin Alawadhi, National Head, Created Business, India & International Markets, HT Media Ltd, and Maneck Davar, chairperson, Kala Ghoda Association.
“This year, 22 curators and 116 volunteers worked to make this festival a reality,” said Davar. With Hara Ghoda as its theme, this year’s edition packed in 102 visual art installations and 560 events — across sections that included music and dance, food and workshops, literature, heritage, urban design, architecture and stand-up comedy.
“The festival really upped its ante this year,” said Srishti Mehra, 25, a communications student from Chembur. “I especially loved the cinema and theatre sections. The production value and performances in most plays were amazing.”
Another highlight for many was Zakir Hussain’s tabla performance, accompanied by Sabir Khan on the sarangi, held under open skies at Cross Maidan.
“There were over 1,500 people in the audience, some even lounging on the grass. It was lovely,” said festival coordinator Nicole Mody.
Vibha Patwardhan, 47, a pre-primary teacher from Borivli, said she was glad she could keep her date with the festival this year too. “It’s the only one in the city that gives a platform to diverse talents.”