The Tribal museum in Bhopal is very thoughtfully planned and the entire campus is theme based right from its entrance. Every art work has some meaning to it which is beautifiully depicted but difficult to deipher without basic knowledge of the tribes.
Best way to understand is ask for a copy of their colorfull brochure which describes meaning of all the major artifact in Hindi. (It can also be downloaded from Tribal Museum Website).
The well planned campus is divided into 6 galleries depicting Cultural Diversity, Tribal Life, Tribal Art, Tribal Mythology, Tribals of Chattisgarh and Tribal Games. It also has Art Exibition Gallery and Open Air Theatre. All the artfacts in Galleries are majorly taken from 7 major and most important tribes of state namely Gond, Bheel, Korku, Kol, Bharia, Baiga and Saharia.
Gallery 1 shows the cultural diversity of various tribes in Madhya Pradesh and adjoining states. The sheer size of Madhya Pradesh where Eastern Border to Western Border is spread 1000 Kms apart allowed many tibes to flourish independently since ancient time. The Gallery depicts the diversity in a very innovative form This Gallery even tries to address life in pre historic Gondwana Land.
Gallery 2 shows day to day life of tribals, their houses, how they live in them, what all basic methods and tools they use to preserve food grains, to cook, the material used to build houses and decorative artfacts. This gallery is a visual treat, though the houses are glamourously built and are far from reality in tough environment they live in, it still provides good insight of their life.
Gallery 3 is all about the art and culture of tribal life. Everything in tribal life revolves around the circle of life i.e. Birth, Marriage and Death. All the festivities and artifacts revolves around this, whether songs, dance or display art. This gallery is perfect fusion of a hypothetical theme based on tribal stories as envisioned by modern artist and created by tribal artists using materials and style of their respective tribes. Built around central theme of marriage with a huge 2 level marriage canopy built in center, this is probably the most interesting gallery in entire museum. Beuatifully designed large replicas of tribal jewellery is one of the major attraction here. Even if you do not know the story behind every peice of art, the colors and light used to depict them will messmerize you.
Gallery 4 is dedicated to mythological beliefs of tribes, every tribes and its sub tribes have their own mythological belief and view about the creator and destructor. Every tribe has their own way to appease them. Tribals normally do not have large temples or prayer halls instead they find their own ways of revering sky, land, fire, water, animals, forests or any other forms of dead or alive.
Mythological / Spritiual gallery tries to represent that in a very sombre way. Small kids may even get horrified looking at it. But it clearly pass on the message, power of spirits is supreme. One of the most interesting artfact here is depiction of Bheel worshipping Baabdev. Such worship places are normally found in every Bheel village in Jhabua district where tribals normally keep their present which are normally terecotta sculptures in the shape of various animals. This revered place is normally the highest place in
One of the most interesting artfact here is depiction of Bheel worshipping Baabdev. Such worship places are normally found in every Bheel village in Jhabua district where tribals normally keep their present which are normally terecotta sculptures in the shape of various animals. This revered place is normally the highest place in any village and over the years pile up of offerings start taking huge shape. Moreover, tribal practices allows them for live sacrifices of animals. The look of this Babdev pile up is terrifying at first but very spritually deep. The gallery has given equal representation to mythological figures of other tribes as well.
Gallery 5 is made for guest state and currently exibits details about tribals of Chattisgarh.
Gallery 6 is for showcasing the various games childrens of these tribes plays like pitoo, stilt and many other indegenously discovered fun activities that keeps them busy.
How to Reach : The nearest city bus stop for Tribal Museum is Depot Chouraha near Shastri Nagar / P&T, which is around 800 meters from Museum. Other Bus Stop would be Polytechnic Chouraha which is around 2 kms from Museum.
Visitors coming on their own vehicle can :
(a) Come till Depot Chouraha (Depot Square) and turn towards Shyamala Hills. Skip first right that goes towards Regional Science Centre. skip second right also and take third right turn on the road that goes towards Judges Colony / Doordarshan Kendra. Museum will be on your left.
(b) From Polytechnic Square, move towards Jahanuma Hotel. Just Before Hotel Ashoka there is a left turn that goes towards Doordarshan Kendra / Judges Colony. Follow that road till end, Tribal Museum is on Right side.
Indian Visitors – Rs. 10/- per person (10 Yrs & Above)
Foreign Visitors – Rs. 100/- per person (10 Yrs & Above)
Photography – Rs. 50/- (Camera without stand/tripod/flash)
Timings: 12 pm to 8 pm
Museum Closed on Monday’s and all state Holidays
Madhya Pradesh Tribal Museum
Shyamala Hills, Bhopal 462002, Madhya Pradesh, INDIA
Phone: +91 755 2661948, 2661640
Website : http://mptribalmuseum.com/