The World Heritage Week, just ended, and the citizens of World Heritage City Ahmedabad had choicest celebration spread across diverse disciplines of architecture, music, food and academic explorations. Among the heritage revelry, one space to stand out, is Dr. Namita & Dr. Hiren Shah’s labour of love ‘Houseum’.
Houseum is a museum housed in a residential bungalow in the posh locality of the western suburb of satellite area in Ahmedabad. Far from the walled heritage city that lies on the eastern banks of river Sabarmati, Houseum by Shah’s is a beautiful tribute to the city’s heritage, delectably created using elements salvaged from havelis and mansions of yesteryear. Every year during the occasion of World Heritage Week, the heritage connoisseur couple opens up their house + museum for enthusiasts to visit and view. The couple personally ensures that each visitor is given a guided tour of the eclectic collection. Team CY has the privilege of being part of one such tour, and have a first hand experience of this hidden marvel of the city.
The museum is a collection of traditional artefacts, artworks, salvaged elements as well as 25 thematic collections – most fascinating among them being the collection of ‘locks’ and ‘puzzles’. Christened as ‘Docslocks’, the collection has over 2000 locks out of which 500 are trick locks, claimed to be the biggest such collection in the world. The newest addition to the museum is a collection called ‘EnigmatTic’. Dr. Hiren Shah is part of the elite group of ‘Puzzlists’, only Indian to achieve this in past 4 decades. EnigmatTic is a collection of unusual objects like trick boxes, furniture spaces with secret spaces, atypical vessels, rare travelling trunks etc. In addition the collection boasts of hundreds of mechanical puzzles which are a delight to view.
In this picture story we give you a peek into the ‘Houseum’ and its rare collections.
Photographs : Rajkumar Rao
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