The artifacts and exhibits within Casa Araujo Alvares serve as bridges connecting the past to the present. This segment scrutinizes the diverse collection housed within the mansion, each piece telling a story of its own. Whether it’s a relic from daily life, a piece of colonial-era furniture, or a religious artifact, each exhibit contributes to the tapestry of Goan history. Explore the curatorial choices made in preserving these artifacts, highlighting the meticulous efforts to maintain a delicate balance between conservation and storytelling.
One of the most remarkable artifacts in Casa Araujo Alvares is the desk of Eufemiano Araujo Alvares, the owner of the house and a prominent lawyer during the colonial period. The desk is made of rosewood and has secret drawers and corners, where Eufemiano stored his important documents and valuables. The desk also has a collection of antique smoking pipes, some of which were gifts from his clients and friends. The desk is a symbol of Eufemiano’s status, intellect, and influence in Goan society.
Another notable artifact in Casa Araujo Alvares is the collection of Ganesh idols, displayed in one of the rooms. The collection consists of thousands of idols of Ganesh, the elephant-headed Hindu god of wisdom and success. The idols are made of various materials, such as clay, wood, metal, and stone. The idols are of different sizes, shapes, and colors, representing the diversity and creativity of Goan artisans. The collection is a tribute to the Hindu heritage of Goa, as well as a sign of the family’s respect and tolerance for other faiths.
A third remarkable artifact in Casa Araujo Alvares is the prayer room with hundreds of icons of Jesus hanging in it. The icons are painted on glass, a technique known as reverse glass painting. The icons depict various scenes from the life of Jesus, such as his birth, crucifixion, and resurrection. The icons are of different styles, some influenced by European art, and some by Indian art. The icons are a testament to the family’s devotion to Christianity, as well as a reflection of the artistic exchange between Goa and the rest of the world.
In unraveling the cultural resonance of Casa Araujo Alvares, we not only peek into the daily lives of those who lived within its walls but also trace the indelible imprints of Portuguese colonialism on Goan heritage. The artifacts and exhibits, carefully curated and displayed, serve as conduits that bridge the gap between the past and the present, inviting visitors to engage with the vibrant history that pulses through every corner of this architectural marvel.