Gurusaday Museum (Museum of Bengal Folk Art)

 

Bratacharigram
(On Diamond Harbour Road)
Joka P.O. 743 512
Distt: 24- Parganas(South), West Bengal
Tel: 4676048

Timings

Timings:Daily 11.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m.
Closed Monday and Government Holidays

Gurusday Dutt systematically studied and collected, about 2,325 exquisite specimens of folk arts and crafts of undivided Bengal, during his tenure as an administrator. These form a part of the unique collection of the Gurusday Museum today. The rich collection of 2,425 exquisite exhibits of folk arts and crafts amply reflect the vigour and vitality of the rural life and present a vivid picture of art and social traditions, religious beliefs, practices and motives, and aesthetic assimilation and cultural influences in West Bengal and Bangladesh.

The exhibits include
- Kantha Work: A folk form of quilting old dhotis and saris and embroidering them with coloured threads drawn from sari borders. Depicted are elaborate and intricate floral, animal, human and other household motifs. Many kanthas reflect the socio-cultural background of Bengal in the 19th century. All the seven varieties of kantha are represented in the collection of 201 exhibits from Faridpur, Khulna, Jessore and Dacca in Bangladesh.
- Terracotta Panels: These have traditionally been used in Bengal to decorate the facades of the temples. A unique collection of 209 ornamental panels of the 16th to 19th centuries from Birbhum, Jessore and Faridpur districts of undivided Bengal can be seen here.

- Paintings: 886 Paintings belonging to the 17th to 20th centuries, 100 dasavatara cards, 266 scrolls, 30 square patas, 406 patas, 5 chalchitras and 64 painted terracotta saras or lids. The paintings are bold and bright and use little ornamentation and shading to highlight the subject: usually mythological or social commentary, rites, rituals and festivals.

- Sculptures: 44 sculptures belonging to the Pala or the Sena Schools of Bengal. Special mention may be made of the statues of Durga, Marichi and the Buddha.

- Carvings: 198 wooden carvings depict popular deities and social themes in a bold and forceful manner during 18th and 19th centuries. Some ornamental figures and architraves indicate the artistic ability and aesthetic taste of the carpenters of the by gone days.

- Moulds: Moulds to shape traditional Indian sweetmeats can be found here. Intricately carved with elaborate designs in clay or stone, the moulds reflect the aesthetics and the taste of the people for things of beauty.

- Dolls and Toys: 419 dolls and toys from Calcutta, Midnapur, the 24-Parganas and Burdwan in India and Mymensing, Faridpur ad Coomilla in Bangladesh. Though the majority of the dolls collected were used by children, there are a few ritualistic ones as well.

- Miscellaneous: Pottery, manuscripts, wooden utensils and toys.

LAYOUT OF THE GALLERIES
Ground Floor
- Kanthas, Wood Carvings, Stone Sculptures, Paintings, Terracotta and Pottery.
First Floor
- Square Patas, Illustrated Manuscript Covers, Manuscripts, Musical Instruments, Dolls, Toys, Painted Saras, Moulds for Sweetmeats and Dried Mango Paste, Terracotta Panels, Personal Belongings of Gurusday Dutt.

EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMMES
- Student Visits
- Classes on Folk Lore and Arts of Bengal
- Special Outdoor and Indoor Exhibitions on Folk Arts
- Research Facilities for Scholars.



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