Author: Mohammed Hussain
Hyderabad: Is it a museum? I wondered when I first entered the house of Mr. Yenugu Krishna Murthy in Lothukunta, near Alwal, Secunderabad.
It is a different kind of house. It is better to put it this way: it is a house with a feel of a museum. That is the impression I got as I entered along with our cameraman Mohammed Minhaj Adnan the house of 79-year-old Yenugu Krishna Murthy.
The atmosphere of the house takes one back to the times passed by. The first jolt is the huge door which is made of wood. “I have brought this door when I had shifted to Hyderabad from Someswaram, my hometown…It reminds me of my mother,” he said with a tinge of nostalgia.
A gangalam (the big vessel usually made of brass) greets you when you enter the house. The beauty of this vessel is that it doubles as a dining table.
The love of the owner with brass is visible everywhere. On the walls and in every corner of the house there is some object which is made of the ‘yellow’ metal. Their presence gives a feeling of walking into a ‘golden room.’
Mr. Murthy catches my scrambling eyes and says how much he adores the metal which has an ancientness to it.
In an interview with saisat.com, Mr. Murthy said with pride, “My house is no less than a museum. Antiquities are not just objects. Each one of them has a lovely story to tell.”
There are more than 900 items of brass and copper from across the globe at his house which he prefers to call a ‘home museum.’
Mr. Murthy believes in the adage that behind every success of a man, there is a woman. He said that if he had succeeded in what he was passionate about it was because of not one but two most beautiful women—one my mother and the other my wife. “My mother laid down the foundation of this collection and later my wife who allowed me to continue with my passion. In fact, she was a great help,” he said.
“I started working on my collection when my mother had to travel from our home in Someswaram to live with my family in Chennai long back in 1970. She brought all the vessels with her.
“Collecting antique is a tough job,” says Murthy. He has had to travel to remote parts of the country. “People used to get suspicious when I insisted on buying their discarded items, even when they were in the worst of conditions,” he recalled.
At his residence, there is also a door to the temple room. “It has different ‘printing blocks’ laid out on it by my wife,” said Murthy.
He added that getting these blocks needed great observation, search, and perseverance. “I used a truck to transport my collection when I shifted my base from one place to another. She was always there when the time came to arrange and rearrange them,” he said with melancholy.
Now that his mother and wife are no more he is worried about the future of his collection. “I have no idea where my museum will be after my death. I have no children,” he added.
Speaking about the passion behind his collection, he said, “I want people, especially children, to learn about the past and enjoy the evening tea by talking about the background of each item…The only thing which gives me the utmost happiness is a lively discussion on my antique pieces,” he signed off.
The readers who wish to see the collection can log on to http://ykantiques.com/ and enjoy the beauty of the antiquities gathered by one man. firstname.lastname@example.org