Syamali Das

Textile Historian, Curator, Educator

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Five memorable photographs from Maharaja Sawai Mansingh II Museum, City Palace, Jaipur.

1. When I joined as Keeper, Textiles in the Museum, the Governor of Rajasthan (Vasantrao Banduji Patil) came to visit the Museum with his family. He was happy to see the rare Mughal voided velvet throne carpet made during Shah Jahan’s time.

2.While visiting the Textile Gallery I took the same group to show the large “Rani ki Mahal” diorama where the exquisite textiles worn by the members of the zenana with jwellery box, pan-daan and blue pottery and silver ware on display.

3. During my tenure, the important exhibition of 19th century photographs taken by Maharaja Sawai Ram Singh II was mounted. It was inaugurated by Rajmata Gayatri Devi (in the photo). Some of the photographs of the ladies of the zenana can be seen here.

4. At the inner courtyard of Chandra Mahal Palace, the Peacock Gate, attracts the attention of all the visitors. When the crown prince Harald and Princess Sonja of Norway visited the Museum we, along with Maharaja Sawai Bhawani Singh and Maharani, took them around the area.

5. The crown prince Harald and Princess Sonja of Norway also visited the Art Gallery where my favourite ‘Shaped Carpet’ with flowering plant motifs from Shah Jahan’s time was on display with paintings of birds and the popular life-size photograph of Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II’s taken during the silver jubilee of his reign in 1948.