Call for Application: Museum Fellowships, Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sanghralaya (CLOSED)

India Foundation for the Arts
in collaboration with
Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya

invites applications for

Two Museum Fellowships
Application deadline: May 31, 2016

(To download the call in Hindi, click here)

This initiative is supported by TATA TRUSTS

India Foundation for the Arts (IFA) in collaboration with the Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya (IGRMS), Bhopal, invites applications for two Museum Fellowships for a period of ten months each.

The Museum Fellowships have been initiated with the two-fold objective of providing practitioners with an opportunity to generate new, creative and critical approaches to public engagement with collections in museums and energising museums as spaces for dialogue and discourse. (For more information log on to

The IGRMS is an ethnographic museum in Bhopal. Established in 1977, the museum covers over 200 acres of land. With both indoor and outdoor galleries the museum aims at highlighting the richness and diversity of India through its collection of over 25,000 traditional and cultural objects.

About the Museum:
The IGRMS museum in Bhopal is a wonderful resource for practicing artists, anthropologists, designers, architects and others. The museum includes both outdoor and indoor exhibits: the outdoor exhibits comprise life-size dwellings that have been constructed by different tribal communities themselves with materials that are traditionally used for their construction; the large collection of objects are displayed in ten indoor galleries with active involvement of the community groups.

The IGRMS has categorised their collection into seventeen functional categories that include agriculture, animal husbandry, art and craft, basketry, fishing, games, and amusements, household objects, hunting implements, musical instruments, the paraphernalia around narcotics, ornaments, objects used for rituals, articles used for spinning and weaving, textiles, dresses, and costumes, vehicles of travel and transport. Almost all of these objects have been collected through field work from different communities and regions from all over the country while others have been acquired from other institutions.

For more information on the museum please refer to their website
For more information about the collection please contact Arun Kiro at or

About the Fellowship:
The aim of this fellowship is to re-think the role of an ethnographic museum in contemporary society. It gives fellows the opportunity to reflect on the history of ethnographic museums and the colonial attitudes that animated them in the first place and to view them now in a globalised contemporary context.

Using the pool of artifacts in the museum collection as the starting point, and stimulus, for visual experimentation and research, the fellows are encouraged to discover new meanings around given objects of heritage by exploring their political, economic, religious and social aspects besides the cultural.

These alternate ways of interpreting, describing and displaying the objects, we hope, will result in an exhibition, a series of activities such as talks, workshops and other public programmes over a time-period of ten months.

Application requirements / application process & important dates:

  • Applicant profile: We seek applications from curators, art historians, artists, designers and others with previous curatorial experience, and with a strong interest in research and working with collections. We encourage applicants to think of an interdisciplinary and collaborative approach to the research as the collection in the museum is very large and varied.
    Practitioners who are Indian nationals or have been a resident of India for five or more years are eligible to apply.
  • Financial assistance and other support: Each fellowship provides an honorarium of Rs 2,00,000/- for a duration of ten months. A separate budget will be provided for the exhibition and outreach activities.

Important dates:

  • The deadline for receiving applications is May 31, 2016
  • Shortlisted candidates will be informed by June 10, 2016
  • Interviews are expected to take place by June 25, 2016
  • The Fellowship start date is scheduled for July 15, 2016

Application Process:
Your application must include:

  • A brief description of an exhibition and public programme you could potentially develop from the collection at the IGRMS. The description should include the vision, approach and possible outcomes of the programme. The intention is to give us an idea of how you would like to approach this project.
  • If it is a collaboration between people from two disciplines, the reasons for the collaboration and what each fellow will bring to the research is essential.
  • A letter of interest explaining how you would benefit from this Museum Fellowship. Please identify aspects of your practice that you think will be honed and further developed during the course of the Fellowship.
  • A brief description of a project you have been involved with as a curator. The description would include the vision, approach, processes and outcomes that have resulted from the project. Please include documentation of the project including 6 to 8 scanned or printed images with titles and date, DVD (maximum 4 minutes), catalogues, artworks, performances, or reviews.
  • Your curriculum vitae.

Please address any queries to or call 080-2341 4681 / 82
Please post the required documents to IFA in an envelope marked 'IGRMS Fellowship' by May 31, 2016.
Please also send a soft copy of the documents to

IGRMS Museum Fellowship
India Foundation for the Arts
'Apurva', Ground Floor,
No 259, 4th Cross, RMV 2nd Stage, 2nd Block
Bangalore - 560 094, India