In Museum Bhavan Dayanita Singh creates a new space between publishing and the museum, an experience where books have the same if not greater artistic value than prints hanging on a gallery wall. Consisting of nine individual “museums” in book form, Museum Bhavan is a miniature version of Singh’s traveling exhibition of the same name whose prints are placed in folding expanding wooden structures (her “photo-architecture”), which she likes to interchange at will.
The images in Museum Bhavan—old and new, intriguingly literal and suggestive—have been intuitively grouped into lyrical chapters in a visual story such as “Little Ladies Museum” and “Ongoing Museum,” as well as more specific series like “Museum of Machines.”
Following her Sent a Letter (2008), the starting point for this project, the books are housed in a handmade box and fold out into accordion-like strips which Singh encourages viewers to install and curate as they wish in their own homes. The exhibition thus becomes a book, and the book becomes an exhibition.