In a city that is more popular for a blend of Mughal and Rajput architecture there Albert Hall Museum stands out from the crowd. Carrying the British Colonial rule legacy, Albert Hall Jaipur has many things that attract visitors from all across the globe. The beauty of the hall is so breathtaking that even Rudyard Kipling, the writer who was a son of a curator found the architecture, woodwork and other exhibits so impressive that he wrote: “it is now a rebuke to all other museums in India from Calcutta downwards”.
So, how is it possible for you to resist visiting this amazingly beautiful tourist spot in Jaipur?
That said if you are also planning a visit to the Albert Hall Museum in Jaipur then make sure you take a look at this write-up.
Albert Hall Museum Jaipur and its History
The history of Albert Hall Jaipur’s construction is very interesting. You will be amused to know that the purpose of construction in 1876 was not to leave a legacy behind but more to lure Prince of Wales, Albert Edward (Queen Victoria’s husband) to visit Jaipur. This step was important to strengthen the ties of Rajputana with the British Empire. Maharaja Sawai Madho Singh II, who was the then King of Jaipur planned the construction of the hall with exquisite Indo-Saracenic architecture to ensure that Prince Albert himself come and lay the foundation stone of the building.
Madho Singh II agreed to the suggestion of Dr. Thomas Holbein Hendley, who was a Resident Surgeon to use the hall as a museum of Industrial Arts but till 1880 it was used as Town Hall. The building remained under construction till 1887 and it was after this that it opened as a museum which became popular for its beauty, display of handicrafts, ancient artwork, artifacts and many other creative masterpieces of local artisans. However, in 1881 a temporary small museum was created and in 1883 Hendley mounted an exhibition at Naya Mahal, which is the old Vidhan Sabha.
Albert Hall Museum Jaipur and its Architecture
Designed by a British architect, Sir Samuel Swinton Jacob, Albert Hall Museum Jaipur is a fusion of Islamic architecture and the Victorian era neo-gothic style. This architecture style is also known as Indo-Saracenic.
The completion of the complex took a decade to complete and this is well reflected in the interior of the hall, such as the stone ornamentation, that demonstrates the classical Indian styles typical of Rajasthan which amalgamates Islamic Mughal and Hindu Rajput architecture style.
The murals found in the corridors are inspired by the Ramayan, and also contains the illustrations of the Persian Razmnama, which was prepared for none other than the Mughal Emperor Akbar.
You can also find the inspiration of Murals from the European, Greek, Babylonian, Egyptian, and Chinese civilizations. In a nutshell, one can say that Albert Hall Jaipur is not only a historically important monument but also a center that imparts knowledge of human civilizations and inspires the current artisans to enhance their skills to preserve & develop the traditional Indian arts, crafts, apart from architectural forms.
When you visit the Albert Hall Museum then you will be able to see the rich archways, beautiful courtyards and splendid towers in the museum that display the architectural heritage of the city Jaipur. You can even find miniature paintings in addition to the portraits of the royal Rajput kings displayed in the center of the museum.
In 1890, Maharaja Sawai Madho Singh, who was the successor of Maharaja Sawai Ram Singh built the museum, the zoo, and the Mayo Hospital to make the dream of the latter come true. And this proved quite beneficial to the Royal family as it led to an increase in the visitors. According to Dr. Hendley’s letter written to the Durbar, which means the ruler of the Jaipur the annual attendance of visitors surged.
Collection at Albert Hall Museum
You will be enthralled to find so many magnificent collections at Albert Hall Museum Jaipur and these are:
Metal Art- Containing the collection of salvers, vessels, and rare salvers with zodiac signs, these metal arts mostly belong to the 19th century. You can even find here shields of Mahabharata, Ramayana and other figures made of bronze, zinc and other metals.
Arms & Armour- You can even find here a vast collection of weapons that were profusely used by not only the Rajputs but the Mughals, Iranians, Turkish and other soldiers. You can even find the finest spears, helmets, Tiger knives, swords, bows, arrows, etc. that will make you feel as if you have entered into the world of medieval India.
Pottery- The famous Blue pottery of Jaipur, and other glazed pottery of 19th century Delhi, Multan and Sindh could also be found here.
Sculptures- If you are fond of sculptures then definitely the stone statue of Lord Shiva belonging to the 8th century will impress you. Apart from this, you can also find a 4th-century statue of a Yakshi and even the famous Black stone sculpture of Chaturbhuj Vishnu.
Miniature Paintings- The most popular of all the collection at the Albert Hall Jaipur is its miniature paintings that are made on different themes of the Mewar School like Malti Madhava, Panchtantra, etc. You can also find Jain paintings with lacquer on a piece of wood, Ragmala paintings and many more.
Clay Art- Among the clay art the Albert Hall Museum stands tall and can offer you artwork displaying A Yogic postures, traditional masks, etc. and all belonging to the 19th century.
Marble Art- The exotic Jaipur stone sculptures belonging to different temples will make your day. You can find here sculptures made from marbles like Nav Grahas, Lord Ganesh, in addition to the Jain Tirthankars.
Other Collections- Apart from all the aforementioned things you can also find international art here like the Japanese dolls, Pharaonic antiquities belonging to the 11th-1st century B.C, and Egyptian Mummy of 322-30 B.C. You may even explore the Ivory statues of Lord Shiva Statue, Dancing Lady, etc.
Jewelry and coins are also found in abundance at Albert Hall Museum Jaipur and the wood carving from Kashmir, expensive Rajputana jewelry, waist belts, ornaments, British India Coin- Gupta Dynasty coin, etc. will captivate you.
Furniture & Wooden Art, Musical Instruments, Garments & Textiles, Carpets, and many other intriguing things could be found here.
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- Address: Museum Road, Ram Niwas Garden, Kailash Puri, Adarsh Nagar, Jaipur, Rajasthan.
- Entry Fee: For Foreign Tourists – 150 INR per person.
- For Indian Tourists – 20 INR per person.
- Visiting Hours: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM daily.