Author: Sonal | Category: Cities, Delhi, Editing, Time Out Delhi, Time Out Delhi Cover Stories | Tags: Air Force Museum, Bhai Mati Das Sati Das, Central Bureau of Investigation, Crafts Museum, Gallery of Musical Instruments, Gargoti Mineral Museum, Heritage Transport Museum, History, Indira Gandhi Memorial, Museums, National Agricultural Science Museum, Parliament Museum, Shankar's International Doll's Museum, Sulabh Toilet Museum, Tenzing Norgay, Town Hall, Tribal Museum, Walled City Museum
Digging out the weird and wonderful in Delhi’s museums ♦
For this Time Out Delhi cover story from September 2011, the team visited almost every museum in Delhi and found everything from accountancy methods to dinosaur eggs. Read the full story below, or download it as a PDF here.
Published: September 30, 2011
Author: Sonal | Category: Cities, Delhi, Time Out Delhi, Writing | Tags: ITO, Museums, Shankar's International Doll's Museum
The world in miniature ♦
This article is part of a longer story on Delhi’s museums.
To celebrate Janmashtami this year, the doll-makers at this museum’s hidden workshop spent four months working on a new diorama. It’s the 45-year-old museum’s only multi-sensory display: a tableau of Vasudeva crossing the Yamuna with baby Krishna on his head. Thunder crashes and lightening flickers over the plastic rain and frozen waves, adding a gloomy vibe to the dim room, which is already eerie with the hundred glassy doll eyes looking out at you.
When political cartoonist K Shankar Pillai began amassing little people (many of them gifts from visiting heads of state), he envisioned his collection as a mini-United Nations. That vision still defines the Shankar’s International Doll’s Museum, but it is – perhaps like the UN itself – a bit frayed. There are amazing, gently disintegrating dolls here: a 250-year-old Swiss doll (who has been “confined to bed” in the display); Shankar’s first doll – an apple-cheeked Hungarian peasant; Japanese Girl’s Day festival hinamatsuri dolls with precise little fans and scrolls; witch-faced Irish biddies; and so much more. There are also recreations of Neil Armstrong’s first moonwalk, Krishna cavorting with a bunch of wild-haired gopis, and Indian dolls made in the museum’s own workshop. Sadly, information on the doll-folk’s individual histories is negligible.
Shankar’s International Doll’s Museum Children’s Book Trust, Nehru House, 4 Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg (+91 11 2331 6970). Pragati Maidan. Tue-Sun 10am-6pm, Entry R15; R5 for children under 12.
Read more about Delhi’s museums.
Published: September 5, 2011