Project Description

Karthika Naïr is a poet, fabulist and librettist whose books include A Different Distance (Milkweed Editions USA, 2021), co-written with Marilyn Hacker. Until the Lions: Echoes from the Mahabharata, her reimagining of the foundational South Asian epic in multiple voices, won the 2015 Tata Literature Live Award for Book of the Year (Fiction) and was highly commended in the 2016 Forward Prizes (UK). Naïr has scripted and co-scripted several highly-acclaimed performances including choreographers Akram Khan’s DESH and Until the Lions (adapted from a chapter of her book) and Carlos Pons Guerra’s Mariposa. She has written two children’s books illustrated by Joëlle Jollivet: Le Tigre de Miel (Hélium, 2013) translated in English as The Honey Hunter (2014) published by Little Gestalten and Les oiseaux électriques de Pothakhudi/A Nestful of Light (Hélium, 2022).

About the book in focus

Les Oiseaux électriques de Pothakudi

In the summer of 2020, even as the pandemic raged over the world, a small report circulated across Indian newspapers: Pothakudi, a village in Tamil Nadu, went without street lighting for 35 nights, because a pair of vannathikuruvi, Oriental Magpie Robins, had built a nest, and laid eggs, in the one switchboard that powered all its street lamps. Les Oiseaux électriques de Pothakudi, called A Nestful of Light in English, springboards from this very real event to create a magical tale of interspecies solidarity and community


  • 26th February : Live Drawing concert with Karthika Naïr and Joëlle Jolivet at Crafts Museum

Organize an event: [email protected]


Les oiseaux électriques de Pothakudi

15 Feb – 5 Mar 2023

Bhopal, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore