The institution of the museum, aimed at housing objects of antiquity, is from the Western origin. Indians did not have a tradition of setting up museums of fragmented sculptures, rusted swords and out of context painting. Soon after the independence of India, various projects and schemes for preservation and development of handicrafts were envisaged in the First and Second Five Year Plans. The Establishment of a Craft Museum was an integral part of this policy. The core collection of the Craft Museum was put together in the 1950s and’ 60z to serve as reference material for the craftsmen whose hereditary traditions were fading on the face of modern industrialization. The low-lying museum building, most appropriate for displaying India’s rural and tribal arts, is designed by the renowned architect Charles Correa, to act as metaphor for an Indian village street – affable, accommodative and active.
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