A new taste of Germany

Youngsters participating at a workshop at the Max Mueller Bhavan in New Delhi on Saturday.

Youngsters participating at a workshop at the Max Mueller Bhavan in New Delhi on Saturday.  

It was a new German experience. From a chance to master the language of the Reich in just about 45 minutes to winning a trip to Germany, Max Mueller Bhavan in New Delhi had a bit of everything on offer this week-end.

A day that presented a bit of every form of art - right from painting, clay modelling and pottery to music and quizzing - Saturday gave adults and children alike a reason to be at 3, Kasturba Gandhi Marg. A complete family affair, it was also about a bit of brainstorming for those with an interest in this European country.

An "Open House" that gave all a chance to get a new taste of Germany, it saw a variety of activities and games being held. At the painting corner, it was time for the children to put their thoughts on paper. From bringing alive Mr.Dream, who could work for "a better world'', to simple sceneries and figures, it was a colourful world that the children participating in the painting competition were presented with.

The pottery corner was just as interesting a sight, what with every eager learner irrespective of their age trying to create something interesting. And for once, parents did not seem to mind the sight of their child's hand being soiled by mud. "It was my first attempt at pottery. And although most of the work was done by the potter present, it has encouraged me to take up pottery,'' said an excited participant, Sheena.

Even the Max Mueller Library had a special "discount'' to offer on Saturday. The organisation is likely to offer a whole new range of information services like online databases, professional research, document delivery and a media section with a new profile stressing on contemporary issues and a special focus on art.

The new wave has resulted in a number of books being withdrawn from the library in the recent past. Thanks to the new collection coming in, the withdrawn books are being offered for just Rs.20 at the library. Also available here are free booklets on various subjects like the 52 years of the Berlin International Film Festival, the film city in Potsdam, Studio Babelsberg, UNESCO World Cultural Heritage, Protection and preservation of monuments in Eastern Germany and the German contribution, film production in the Federal Republic of Germany and the changing face of German vocational training.

The competition and learning aside, the evening was reserved for music lovers with India's Sivamani and Germany's Andreas Keller putting together a memorable percussion performance.

By Lakshmi Balakrishnan

Photo: R.V. Moorthy

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