By Suman Bajpai,
When we think of museums, we think of vast corridors of art and artefacts lined neatly to be examined and contemplated by visitors. But it is not like this. These days dynamic elements of exploring history and objects of art are finding their way into museum cultures. These contemporary museums have totally changed the concept of displaying and presentation of objects.
The Bihar Museum, situated in Patna, is one of the largest museums in India and one of the most ambitious projects undertaken by a state government in India. The museum galleries chronologically illustrate the history of Bihar and its impact on the subcontinent.
Biennale-a new dimension
Organized by the Department of Arts, Culture and Youth affairs, Government of Bihar, Bihar Museum Biennale will be held from 22-28 March, 2021 at the museum premises in Patna. This first ever Museum Biennale in the country and the world will open on March 22 on the auspicious occasion of Bihar Divas providing a gateway to the richness and treasures of Indian museums and also bringing together a highlight of key collections from various museums across the world. Its aim to sensitize the significance of a museum culture
The inauguration will be held at the Bihar Museum in presence of Nitish Kumar, Chief Minister of Bihar, Anjani Kumar Singh, the Nodal Officer of the Bihar Museum and Advisor to the Chief Minister and Deepak Anand, Director, Bihar Museum and a few select invited dignitaries. The publication, Bihar, India and the World: Celebrating Museum Collections, which comprises detailed information of the 12 primary national participating museums, which has been compiled for the purpose of the Bihar Museum Biennale, will also be launched at the inaugural event.
Discussion on various aspects
In this week-long event, various discussion sessions will take place. Interesting topics like, how can we approach living culture as an essential infrastructure to the shaping of our collective history and legacy, How do we shape, form, and navigate the history of the contemporary with its entailed relationship with ‘the past,’ can museum cultures and museums as institutions be instrumental in building bridges of understanding across cultures, people, and generation in our increasingly fragmented world, how do we best ensure representation of the marginalised and the sidestepped to give voice to a more ‘whole’ civic society, and more will be explored.
The Biennale is anticipated by art lovers and visitors as a key initiative of Bihar’s cultural calendar of 2021. During the course of the seven days, especially curated virtual tours of the participating national and international museums will be streamed online as well as at the Bihar Museum in Patna. Some of the participating museums from India are Assam State Museum; City Palace Museum, Udaipur; Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, Mumbai; Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya, Bhopal; Kanha Museum of Life and Art, and many more.
(The author is a well-known travel writer. Views expressed are personal and do not reflect the position or policy of the Financial Express Online.)