Government Museums need more Government Care..

Museums are the reflection of any culture or city or a part of art/history. Tourists rarely miss a chance to visit any city’s museum(s) in their travel plans. But, museums are not taken seriously by their own caretaker government departments because they don’t seem to generate revenue. This viewpoint needs to be changed because they are actually always on the tourists’ interest  and with  proper visitor facilities, like museum shop, canteen etc. can generate good revenue.
It is awkward to find that our culture is displayed in much better and beautiful light at places far away, but not at our own place, in our own museums!
Tourists are disappointed to see the museums that are haphazardly displaying art or historical objects. Curators feel helpless when they want to take good care of their collections, but cannot do much in the want of the Government Department’s ignorance regarding museums’ importance.

Author: namitajaspal
Namita Jaspal, with inherited skills of art and aesthetics and passion for science, opted to pursue post- graduation in ‘Conservation of Cultural Property’ after her graduation in Science from Delhi University in 1992. Four year intense training at National Museum Institute provided the right foundation to start a career in Conservation. She is currently practicing conservation consultancy for Heritage property including monuments and collections. She has been doing independent research in conservation techniques and procedures in Indian context. She is currently working on the conservation of wall-paintings of Sri Harmandir Sahib Ji (The Golden temple at Amritsar. The project is nearing completion and getting a lot of appreciation for the organized and ethical treatment it is providing. It is for the first time in the history of Sri Harmandir Sahib Ji (The Golden Temple) that wall painting conservation and preservation is being done in a scientific manner, keeping the codes of Ethics into consideration while decision making. Another project just completed is of the Conservation of Krishna Temple at Kishankot, Gurdaspur, Punjab. In her private Conservation Laboratory, she is not only providing onservation services, but also mentoring young aspiring conservators and archaeologists by the way of training and paid internships. She has been a guest lecturer at DIHRM (Delhi Institute of Heritage Research and Management). With all the updated knowledge database and innovative practical approaches relevant to the Indian conditions, she could successfully do curative and preservative treatment of very old textiles like a nine feet long flag from nineteenth century that is regarded as priceless memorabilia of second Dogra regiment at Chandi Mandir, and four hundred years old (seventeenth century) Chola Sahib Ji of Sixth Guru of Sikhs, Sri Hargobind Sahib Ji. Apart from this she has done conservation of Photograph collections, archival records, numerous paintings, manuscripts and other cultural objects. She is also involved in preparation of up-gradation proposals for museums and such organizations. Her expertise includes Conservation and preservation technologies and procedures for conservation of varied material like wall paintings, paper, photographs, textile, ceramics, stone, metal and archaeological objects.

1 thought on “Government Museums need more Government Care..

  1. Very true. It is a shame that government museums are in a disgraceful state in most cities around the country. I very much feel that we have these old egoistic men who are conservation officials to blame. They just go on and on about what they know, which is actually something that was valid like a century ago. God forbid, you tell them to refer to a new age technology or anything new for that matter, you will be shunned down and asked to keep quiet. If blindly like sheep you say yes, it will take you to immense heights in the conservation field. I have no idea how these old chauvinist men are still working in their 70s, 80s and 90s. I mean why don’t they retire like other people and let the next generation take it on from there? What hurts me the most is that because of all this the heritage of our country suffers. They restore things that need to be conserved, use paneer to consolidate wall paintings and what all. It is abhorring and appalling to see passionate students leave the industry because these old morons are doing everything in their power to demoralize and disappoint students. Using science to save art is an immense responsibility that only a few people are fortunate to share. We must never do things for our personal glory and fame as saving our past is what matters the most. I feel ashamed to have been associated with such people who wanted me to destroy old art in the name of saving it.

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