CSMVS — Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (formerly Prince of Wales Museum) — is India’s premier art and history museum. With a world-class collection and a visitor-friendly approach, CSMVS is a much sought-after cultural attraction in the city of Mumbai. One of the people making CSMVS and its offerings so special is its curator, Dr. Prasanna Mangrulkar. The Culture Trip recently caught up with Dr. Mangrulkar.What has your journey with CSMVS been like” Can you take us on a short trip down memory lane?
My journey with CSMVS started on July 1st, 2007. It took me five years to understand the role of a curator in a museum and also what a museum is. My job at CSMVS gave me an easy entry into Mumbai‘s cultural center. This was something unimaginable. Before the museum job, I was in the teaching profession. That job gave me ample time to focus my attention on my doctorate, and the curatorship is the fruit of those efforts.What advice would you give to someone who was trying to break into this business?
A curator is expected to maintain a great level of attention in his day-to-day work, as he is dealing with precious/invaluable art objects. In addition to this, integrity is also important, as it is directly associated with the safety and security of the museum. Most of the museums in India are controlled by the Indian government, and the conditions are pathetic, owing to various reasons. Autonomous museums like CSMVS are very few and have their own pluses and minuses. So my advice is if someone thinks that s/he has these qualities, only then think of taking up this job.What’s the most exciting part of your job”
The opportunity to interact with scholars and VIPs from various part of the world, and I am always surrounded by art objects.What is your dream project?
To curate an exhibition on unseen art objects from the museum.What is the most memorable moment from your career?
My first curated exhibition of Bombay School paintings.How would you describe CSMVS in 80 characters?
Sublime.Rapid Fire Van Gogh or Picasso?
Van Gogh.Chocolate or vanilla?
Vanilla.World history or Indian history?
World history.Coffee or tea?
Coffee.Android or iOS?
Android.Introvert or extrovert?
For an day full of art, history and culture, head over to CSMVS Museum!
Visiting Hours: 10:15am to 6pm (last admission at 5:45pm)
Interview conducted by Sukhada Chaudhary