RESTORING MEDIEVAL BUDDHIST SHRINES IN NEPAL’S HIMALAYAS

In this photograph taken on June 15, 2016 Nepalese artist Tsewang Jigme….restores  sacred murals…..in the remote Upper Mustang region.

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In Nepal’s  Upper Mustang region, once part of the Buddhist kingdom of Mustang high on the Tibetan plateau, the artist  Tsewang  Jigme works on the restoration of antique murals. It is said that murals in some temples in this area predate the oldest temples in Tibet.  But neglect, wind, rain and smoke have turned the bright frescoes into black. Many of these shrines survived the Cultural Revolution of the 1960’s and the earthquake of  April 2015.
Read this article to see how the restoration of these sacred murals is making progress in the 21st century: http://www.mysinchew.com/node/114954?tid=
Cheers,
Elisabeth and Natasha

MY SUGGESTIONS FOR FALL IN PARIS…

WHEN IN PARIS……….not only to the Moulin Rouge  ……….
 
 A TOUR THAT FOCUSES ON  MAJOR COLLECTIONS OF ASIAN ART
OCTOBER 5TH- OCTOBER 7TH
ORGANIZED BY THE ORIENTAL CERAMIC SOCIETY: http://ocs-london.com
If you cannot join the OCS,  do it on your own. These are some of the best and oldest collections of Asian art in the world.
1. CHATEAU DE FONTAINEBLEAU with treasures from the Summer Palace
2. MUSEE GUIMET   (http://www.guimet.fr/en/)
3.  MUSEE D’ENNERY (musée Guimet  website)
4. MUSEE DU QUAI BRANLY (http://www.quaibranly.fr)  specializing in Asian ethnographic material
Cheers,
Elisabeth and Natasha

NEW DISCOVERY IN PAKISTAN DATING BACK TO MAURYAN AND KUSHAN DYNASTIES IN SWAT, PAKISTAN

Archeologists excavated in April and June of 2016 layers  of cities associated with  Indo-Greek, Mauryan and Kushan cultures.
Mauryan settlements dating to the third century BC – think of the great Mauryan king Ashoka, the  grandson of the founder of the dynasty who vigorously promoted Buddhism among other things with carved edicts  on pillars of stone and wood from Bengal  to Afghanistan.  Some of us have admired the great lion capital in Sarnath from a time when episodes  and symbols from Buddha’s life  were portrayed – in this case the lotus and the wheel of law – instead of the later  presentations of Buddha  – seen first in the arts of Gandharan and Mathura.
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Archeologists also excavated a large temple with four pillars belonging to the Kushan era, 2nd century BC to second century AD. The Kushans dominated the areas of the Hindu Kush into Kabul, Gandhara, northern Pakistan and north-western India. They controlled the trade between China in the east and the Romans in the west. Under the famous Kushan ruler Kanishka ( 144 to 172 AD) Buddhist settlements flourished including Gandhara with its distinctive Graeco – Buddhist art form that influenced the arts in Central Asia and then China.
I first read about this discovery in Buddhist Art News:
Cheers,
Elisabeth and Natasha

ANCIENT BUDDHIST CARVING EXCAVATED IN THE SWAT VALLEY IN PAKISTAN

I do not want to disclose the exact location  — we do not need any more obliterations of Buddhist sculptures — but carvings dating back some 1700 years have been found in the remains of an old shrine. The fragment shows  what is known as The Great Departure  — the historical Prince Siddhartha leaving his palace in Kapilavastu venturing outside the castle confines to experience suffering and eventually attain enlightenment  to become Gautama Buddha.

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Cheers,
Elisabeth and Natasha

Swann Galleries’ Early Printed Books Auction

Central Asian travel books exceeded expectations at Swann Galleries’ Spring Early Printed Books Auction.

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Sir Marc Aurel Stein, Serindia: Detailed Report of Explorations in Central Asia and Westernmost China, first edition, Oxford, 1921. Sold April 12, 2016 for $18,750. (Pre-sale estimate $6,000 to $9,000).

New interest in the adventures of the Silk Road during the late 19th and early 20th century sparked these extraordinary prices.  I am aware that Sir Aurel Stein also removed a collection of books and manuscripts from the famous Dunhuang caves……..  And some of us are still waiting to go…..especially to the Taklamakan desert — if only briefly!

Cheers,

Elisabeth and Natasha

NUNS LEARN TO PRESERVE AND PROTECT THE TREASURES IN THEIR MONASTERY

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Buddhist Art News shared the attached article about a group of  seventeen nuns who have learned   in Bodhgaya, Bihar State,  India,  from Ann Shaftel, an expert in sacred art preservation,  how to document and preserve  thangkas, statues,  costumes and texts.
P.S. Bodhgaya is a place for pilgrimage since this is the place where Gautama Buddha is said to have attained enlightenment under a Bodhi tree.
Please read this encouraging story.
Cheers,
Elisabeth and Natasha

HARN MUSEUM OF ART IN FLORIDA

HARN MUSEUM OF ART

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
Gainesville
The Harn Museum  recently completed conservation of seven paintings by Bengali artist Jamini Roy.  The Museum contains 45 paintings by the artist (1887-1972), the largest holdings by this artist outside India.
The Harn focuses on African and Asian art and contemporary and modern art and photography.  Asian art includes more than 2000 works  from China, Japan, Korea, India and Southeast Asia.
Enjoy!
Cheers,
Elisabeth and Natasha
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