Thursday, February 20, 2020

"Divine Beings" museum exhibition (Feb. 20)

Norton Simon Museum (; CC Liu, Crystal Quintero (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
Vishnu Riding Garuda, 320-500 CE, Eastern India or Bangladesh, Gupta Period
Parinirvana, Tosa Yukihiro 土佐行広 (Japan,
Muromachi Period, 1338-1573), circa 1451
A new exhibition at the Norton Simon Museum features works by Asian artists in response to spiritual concepts: "Divine Beings" spotlights six exceptional works, five of which are loans that include four Buddhist paintings from China, Korea, and Japan linked with Buddhism and one Hindu sculpture from Eastern India or Bangladesh.

Visitors are invited to explore the relationships between these and more than 30 selected works from the Norton’s vast Greco-Buddhist (Gandharan) collection on view within five Chinese galleries. Some representations of Buddhist, Hindu, and Taoist gods and demigods (devas) take the form of humans, such as the Three Taoist Star Lords (ETs?)

Zhao Changguo 趙 昌 國 (Chinese, active 16th century), Three Taoist
Star Lords Playing Weiqi in Autumn Mountains Ming Dynasty, 1500s

Other works depict real or mythological animals, such as the dragon (naga), phoenix (garuda), tiger, owl, ox, horse, and crane, which are believed to possess supernatural abilities, acting as guardians or mounts (transport) for deities and/or disembodied "souls" (gandharvas). Within the structure of time-honored artistic and philosophical conventions, each artist has thoughtfully given form to traditional beliefs about the fundamental nature of existence. It runs between February 20–June 30, 2020. More

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