Dancing in Circles in the Arts of India and Its Neighbors

Member Events
Krishna playing the flute and dancing with the milkmaids (detail), approx. 1700–1900. Southern India. Bronze. Asian Art Museum, The Avery Brundage Collection, B77B5. Photograph © Asian Art Museum of San Francisco.

Dancing in Circles in the Arts of India and Its Neighbors

Forrest McGill
June 19, 2020
10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Pacific Time
Zoom Webinar
Special Fee: $10 per person Society members; $15 per person non-members

Registration for this event is now closed. A link to the webinar was sent via email to all registered attendees on Wednesday, June 17. Thank you.

In India and its neighboring countries, one of the most important subjects of sculpture, painting and other visual arts is dance. Dance has always held a uniquely important place in the culture of the region, where it can convey the profoundest religious, spiritual and social messages. This lecture focuses on the circle dances engaged in by Hindu deities, such as Krishna, and Buddhist deities, such as Hevajra. In another sense, "dancing in circles" also applies to the great god Shiva. What is conveyed can be creative energy and eroticism, the doom-laden power of destruction, or the prospect of transcendence.

Forrest McGill, Wattis Senior Curator of South and Southeast Asian Art, has worked at the Asian Art Museum for more than twenty years. Previously he was a museum administrator and a teacher, curator, researcher and write on Asian art. The most recent exhibition he organized and served as catalog editor for was The Rama Epic: Hero, Heroine, Ally, Foe (2016).

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