Buddhist, Hindu event comes to KC

Nelson-Atkins Museum plays host to symposium on Asian art

— The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is presenting "On the Cusp of an Era: Art in the Pre-Kushan World," a symposium to define the formative stages of the Buddhist and Hindu art that developed in South and Central Asia from second century B.C. to 100 A.D.

The event, which takes place Wednesday through Saturday at the museum, will assemble 24 of the world's leading scholars who will present papers about the diverse cultural and artistic heritage upon which so much of South Asian religious art is founded.

Pre-Kushan art comes from a geographic area spanning present-day Uzbekistan to the Gangetic Valley in India.

Registration is $100 for non-museum members, $90 for members and $50 for students with I.D.

Events planned in conjunction with the symposium are:

� Friday: Indian dinner and music by Nada Bharama, 5 p.m.-8:30 p.m., Rozzelle Court; dance performance by Nritya, Gujarati Samaj, 7 p.m., Atkins Auditorium.

� Saturday: "Close Encounters: Multicultural Systems in Ancient India," lecture by Pia Brancaccio, department of Indian and Himalayan art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2:30 p.m., Atkins Auditorium.

In addition, the Nelson-Atkins will display "Snake Cult Goddesses of Ancient India," a series of sculptures of Snake Cult Goddesses," through Jan. 7.

The naginis, or snake goddesses, were carved near present-day Mathura in northern India more than 1,900 years ago. The exhibit also will feature a scientific component that will show how sandstone weathers over time.


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