The purpose of a museum or an exhibition is not about conveying information (which is a commodity in this information age) but invoking emotion from within, make a basis for reflection and let the visitor grasp the real significance of the situation. The whole idea is to present an experience. I had one such memorable experience when I entered the permanent exhibition – Defending Human Dignity by Gringo Cardia, a Brazilian graphic designer and an artist inside the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum in Geneva, Switzerland.
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Whenever mundane reality clogs my thoughts, invades the realm of the senses, shrinks me and shakes the tranquility of my mind, I gear up to travel to new places if time and situation permit or else I just open an unread book. Both of them comfortably take me afar from the present. And then, I find myself all charged up again like a phoenix. Books and travel, two of my favorite companions in life merge into one whenever I visit a library – the storehouse of thousands of years of knowledge.
206 nations; 306 events in 28 sports; 11000 participants and one unique flame representing the spirit of all. You got it right. I am talking about the Olympics. Now, when the game is on, some of you might be coming back home to watch your favorite games or athletes in the Olympics, while some of you are tracking the counts for medals for your country and some like me, is loving the whole atmosphere that it creates. The very spirit of togetherness and friendship among nations and fellow athletes even on the stage of the competition is a precious gift of the Olympics, I believe. Beyond winning and losing, it ignites a flame in all to remain fit, healthy and inspires to thrive for one’s best. Today, I would like to tell you my experience of visiting the Olympic Museum (the museum is the largest archive of the Olympic Games in the world) in Lausanne, Switzerland. Beautiful Lausanne is also the headquarter of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
Over the horizon the floating white clouds were meeting yet shying away without touching. A relentless march of colors everywhere. Sweet fragrance filling the air. Sun shining warm and wind blowing cold. Yes, spring has sprung, I murmured that day. Indeed, spring is a carnival of nature, I felt. I wanted to make that day special, so fixed up a rendezvous with our beloved little tramp, Charlie Chaplin in Vevey, Switzerland.
Festivals are interesting! We all celebrate our respective festivals every year. Perhaps most of us enjoy festivals with some set conventions and rules. I had seen in our culture, any deviations from tradition produce anxiety and fear of nameless consequences. In my early age, I never questioned those traditions, but now I do. Now I celebrate in my own little way. Here is a story of a Christmas morning in Switzerland.
Imagine a still dark night, you, a candle and solitude! Did you realize the solitude too was melting along with the candle? Did you notice that when you were focussing on the flickering flame, your solitude was filling itself with those untamed thoughts? Did you feel that the single melting candle defied both the darkness and the solitude?