Artists to launch mobile Slum Museum in Dharavi, Mumbai’s million-strong slum

Architecture International
Dharavi Streets. (Courtesy M M Flickr)

Dharavi Streets. (Courtesy M M Flickr)

Dharavi, a slum in the heart of Mumbai, is home to approximately one million people, making it one of the largest slums in the world. Next month, Dharavi will house the first slum museum, Design Museum Dharavi. The museum will open February 2016, “creating a place where makers can find potential clients, teach workshops to the rest of the community and take their own practice one step further,” the museum page says.

Mobile Structure. (Courtesy Design Museum Dharavi)

Mobile Structure. (Courtesy Design Museum Dharavi)

Beading in Dharavi. (Courtesy M M Flickr)

Beading in Dharavi. (Courtesy M M Flickr)

In response to Dharavi’s population density, the museum will be constantly on the move. Jorge Mañes Rubio, an Amsterdam-based visual artist, along with the museum team, designed a small, flexible structure that can be easily drawn through slums on bikes or small vehicles. The mobile museum will travel in order to host workshops, lectures, exhibitions, and cultural events throughout Dharavi.

The team’s intentions “are to acknowledge the citizenship of these people, to recognize their equal rights compared to the rest of the city, and promoting a greater exchange between formal and informal economies.”

“We believe that the objects made in Dharavi could be as valuable as those collected by design museums,” said museum leaders, “We want to give these objects a platform to be contemplated and appreciated by makers and locals from Dharavi, the city of Mumbai and the rest of the world. The main mission of Design Museum Dharavi is to challenge our perception of ‘slums, favelas, barriadas, ghettos’ on a global scale.”

For more information on Design Museum Dharavi, visit the project page here.

Dharavi Pottery. (Courtesy M M Flickr)

Dharavi Pottery. (Courtesy M M Flickr)

Related Stories