Exploring Jaipur’s Art and Design Scene: From Bazaars to Block Printing

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Jaipur's art and design scene

This article, brought to you by National Geographic Traveller (UK), presents a fascinating journey through Jaipur’s rich art and design offerings. If you’re looking to delve into the city’s textile heritage, the Anokhi Museum of Hand Printing is a must-visit. Housed in a charmingly restored haveli, the museum showcases exquisite clothing and concise, well-written information boards. While there, don’t forget to explore the on-site shop, and consider combining your visit with a short rickshaw ride to the UNESCO-listed Amber Fort, a magnificent walled fortress overlooking the city.

For those interested in the arts and theatre, the Jawahar Kala Kendra Centre, situated just outside the Old City, serves as a prominent cultural hub. Its six galleries, museum, library, and open-air theatre offer a diverse range of traditional and contemporary art, as well as captivating performances, including folk dance and theatre festivals.

For a taste of Jaipur’s royal heritage, the City Palace is an ideal destination. As the current residence of the royal family, this 300-year-old palace reflects a blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architectural styles. The thoughtfully curated museum within the complex boasts an extensive textile collection, featuring elaborately woven fabrics that once adorned the royal wardrobe, along with a centuries-old carpet.

To experience the essence of local shopping, make your way to Tripolia Bazaar, one of Jaipur’s oldest markets. Here, you’ll find a variety of treasures, from traditional lac bangles to captivating wall hangings. Keep an eye out for the skilled blacksmiths, whose rhythmic hammering adds to the market’s charm. Should you find more than you can carry, consider purchasing a beautifully crafted metal trunk to ship your finds back home.

For a moment of relaxation, indulge in the captivating ambiance of Bar Palladio, located amidst the peacock-filled gardens of Narain Niwas Palace. This visually arresting restaurant features tented daybeds and stunning blue frescoes. Its Italian-inspired menu offers authentic pasta dishes, complemented by a wide selection of potent cocktails, such as their renowned margaritas. For an extended stay, consider booking a room at its sister property, hotel Villa Palladio, situated just outside the city.

Witness architectural marvel at the Hawa Mahal, also known as the ‘Palace of Winds,’ boasting an astounding 953 windows. Originally used as a screened porch for royalty to observe the world below, this five-story facade is a mesmerizing work of art. To beat the crowds, plan an early morning visit to this enchanting structure, part of the City Palace complex.

For those seeking a hands-on experience, a block printing workshop offers a fantastic opportunity to learn a new skill. Work alongside local artisans, selecting your own blocks and color scheme. The Wabisabi Project provides excellent workshop sessions, complete with glimpses of the drying fields and plenty of chai to keep your creative energy flowing.

Finally, fashion enthusiasts will delight in Saurashtra Impex, a quaint shop located in the city’s northwest. Featured in Vogue in the past, the store offers a vibrant selection of textiles. If you have specific clothing in mind, the charismatic owner is happy to accommodate custom orders, with speedy delivery. A friendly haggle, accompanied by a smile, is recommended for a satisfying shopping experience.

This enthralling journey through Jaipur’s art and design scene was featured in the Jul/Aug 2023 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK), a magazine that brings the world’s wonders to your doorstep. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to subscribe and explore the globe from the comfort of your home. (Note: Subscription availability may vary in select countries.)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Jaipur’s art and design scene

What can I explore in Jaipur’s art and design scene?

Jaipur’s art and design scene offers a diverse range of attractions. You can visit the Anokhi Museum of Hand Printing to learn about textiles, explore the Jawahar Kala Kendra Centre for art and theatre, and experience the royal heritage at City Palace. For shopping, head to Tripolia Bazaar, and for relaxation, indulge in the ambiance of Bar Palladio. Don’t miss the architectural wonder of Hawa Mahal and consider joining a block printing workshop to learn a new skill. Fashion enthusiasts can explore Saurashtra Impex for bespoke clothing.

What is featured at the Anokhi Museum of Hand Printing?

The Anokhi Museum of Hand Printing is a delightful introduction to Jaipur’s textile industry. You’ll find concise and excellently written information boards and a spectacular display of clothing. Additionally, there’s an on-site shop to explore, and you can easily combine your visit with a trip to the nearby UNESCO-listed Amber Fort.

What can I find at Jawahar Kala Kendra Centre?

The Jawahar Kala Kendra Centre showcases both traditional and contemporary art and serves as a platform for preserving Rajasthan’s rich heritage and master craftsmanship. The center comprises six galleries, a museum, a library, and an open-air theatre that hosts a variety of engaging programs, from plays to folk dance, including its own theatre festival.

What can I expect at City Palace?

City Palace is a 300-year-old palace that is still inhabited by Jaipur’s royal family. It’s an architectural marvel, blending Rajasthani and Mughal styles. Among the attractions are beautiful courtyards, gardens, and buildings. The palace houses a thoughtfully curated museum featuring an extensive textile collection, including elaborately woven fabrics from the royal wardrobe, as well as a carpet dating back over 400 years.

What can I find at Tripolia Bazaar?

Tripolia Bazaar is one of Jaipur’s oldest markets and a shopper’s paradise. You’ll discover various items, from traditional lac bangles to captivating wall hangings. The market is also known for its skilled blacksmiths, adding to its unique charm. Consider purchasing a finely crafted metal trunk to carry your treasures back home.

What does Bar Palladio offer?

Bar Palladio provides a visually arresting dining experience surrounded by peacock-filled gardens. The restaurant features tented daybeds and vivid-blue frescoes. The menu offers authentic Italian pasta dishes and an extensive selection of potent cocktails, with their margaritas being particularly noteworthy. For a more extended stay, you can explore its sister property, hotel Villa Palladio, located just outside the city.

What is the architectural wonder at Hawa Mahal?

Hawa Mahal, known as the ‘Palace of Winds,’ boasts an impressive facade with 953 windows. It once served as a screened porch for royals to observe the outside world. This five-story structure, part of the City Palace complex, is a mesmerizing work of art that should be visited early in the morning to avoid crowds.

How can I learn block printing?

To learn block printing, you can participate in a workshop. Many companies offer this experience, but the Wabisabi Project provides excellent sessions where you can work alongside local artisans, choose your own blocks, and color scheme. The workshop also includes a glimpse of the drying fields and plenty of chai to keep your creative energy flowing.

What can I expect at Saurashtra Impex?

Saurashtra Impex is a charming shop in the northwest of the city, offering a delightful selection of textiles. Featured in Vogue previously, the store boasts an explosion of colors. The enthusiastic owner will gladly showcase his wares, and you can even have custom clothing made if you bring specific pieces along. A friendly haggle is recommended for a satisfying shopping experience.

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3 comments

Fashionista22 July 30, 2023 - 11:46 am

saurashtra impex for vibrant textiles yasss! vogue feature? im sold! gotta haggle for custom cloth, cant wait to explore anokhi museum, national geographic traveller has the best travel ideas!

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WanderlustFan July 30, 2023 - 11:49 am

tripolia bazaar omg! so many stuffs lac bangles, wall hangins! bar palladio for italian pasta n cocktales, must see peacock gardens, hawa mahal fascinatin, im joinin block printin workshop sounds fun!

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Adventurer123 July 30, 2023 - 7:59 pm

wow jaipur art scene sounds amazin lots to do from museum 2 shopping, gotta visit jawahar kala kendra, they got plays n folk dance!, city palace with old textile n stuff, love hawa mahal’s windows so cool

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