Jayalakshmi Vilas Mansion (Manasa Gangothri) or Folklore Art Museum.
The folklore museum contains representative collections of art and crafts from all over Karnataka. The museum was founded in 1968. It is located in the University of Mysore in the Manasagangothri campus in the The Jayalakshmi Vilas Mansion. Since its foundation the University of Mysore has contributed to study of folklore, and the museum has been developed to its present level by scholars such as P.R. Thippeswamy, Javeregowda and Jeesham Paramashivaiah.
P.R. Thippeswamy brought material from all over Karnataka to increase the museum’s collection. As a folklore museum it not only showcases items but also elements of music, dance and drama.
The renovated mansion has 125 rooms, 300 windows, 287 exquisitely carved doors and it was spread across six acres. There are entrances on each side, different from each other. The entrance on the northern side has an extrusion on the stairs presumably to be used as alighting platform from cars and chariots. The mansion is chiefly built of brick and mortar, timber and iron. Stone was dispensed with considering the amount of delay it would have on construction if it were used. There are separated drainages for rain water and used water.
Salient Architectural Features
Series of twin Corinthian and ionic columns, regal pediments, plastered window sets, and oval ventilators, all richly moulded. Different wings of the building are connected by arch colonnades. There is a small courtyard with a fountain at the centre of the main hall. The interiors with rich carvings and mouldings, both in masonry and wood, are kept Hindu, regardless of the style adopted for the facade.
With 6500 folklore articles on display, the museum is acclaimed as one of the biggest of its kind in Asia. Temple chariots, wooden images from Mekkekatte, religious objects, belonging to Soliga tribe etc. lamps, ornamental wooden altar, costumes of Yakshagana plays, masks, boundary godess, joint puppets, village deities, marionettes, saw dust dolls, wood carvings, cooking utensils, measures, churns, jewellery, metal ware, leather dolls, fold weapons, agriculture implements, pots, beads, baskets, weaving, puppets, folk musical instruments, textiles, objects of folk games, children.