press club of india, Indian Tehalka News
A crib from India has for the first time found a place at the UNESCO-promoted International Nativity Museum located in Bethlehem. The museum, which draws visitors from across the globe, contains more than 223-nativity representations of crib sets from over 90 countries.
The unique aspect of the museum is that each crib depicts the birth of Christ using the styles and motifs unique to the tradition and culture of the country it comes from.
“The Indian crib set is the representative of a pan-Indian culture,” said Fr. Jesudoss Arokiam, Bursar of the Museum, adding that it is a “matter of great honour and prestige that an Indian crib set, which was long due, will now find a place among other crib sets stationed in the International Nativity Museum in Bethlehem.”
Officials of the museum said that the demand for an Indian crib had been there for quite some time. In fact in 2013, the highest number of tourists visiting the museum in Bethlehem was from India.
The Indian crib is made by a Kolkata-based company Church Art, which provides creative art works for churches, schools and museum.
With a village backdrop, the Indian crib set uses traditional dresses like saris and dhotis and the facial features have been done on the lines of the models created by village artisans. The model, which also includes a cow and a camel, is made of fibreglass while sets from other parts of the world have been made of stone, ceramics, wood or clay.
“We tried to display a complete Indian setting through the crib set. The three kings or the magi, have been attired in the royal traditions. So we have a Chola king from the South, a Rajput king from the North, and a king from Assam to represent the East,” Subrata Ganguly, director of Church Art, told The Hindu.
Mr. Ganguly said officials from the International Nativity Museum had come to the city last month to collect the crib set.
Legend has it that the place where the International Nativity Museum stands today, was the same spot the three wise men passed through on their way to meet the Infant Jesus more than 2,000 years ago.
The museum was first started at Turin in Italy but was shifted to Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus, in 1999.
From: The Hindu