One of the world’s most captivating stories, the Ramayana, has inspired artists in India for more than 1500 years. The moral and epic struggles of kings, warriors, wives and brothers effortlessly traverse the worlds of humans, animals, gods and demons. In a special collaboration with the San Diego Museum of Art, the Seattle Art Museum will present an exhibition of art depicting scenes and heroes of the Ramayana.
Visitors will follow the unfolding of the dramatic narrative, become familiar with its protagonists and learn the underlying philosophical and devotional meanings of the Ramayana in this presentation of nearly 40 paintings of stunning quality—many of which have never been shown before. Representative works from a variety of regions, social classes and time periods reveal how artists depicted the same story in marvelously diverse means of visual expression, thereby testifying to the Ramayana’s timeless appeal.
–Sonya Quintanilla, Ph.D., Curator of Asian Art, San Diego Museum of Art
To explore this exhibition a little deeper, download our bibliography. Teachers, integrate Paintings of the Ramayana into your classroom with our Paintings of the Ramayana Educator Resource List.
The exhibition was co-organized by the San Diego Museum of Art and the Seattle Art Museum. Major Sponsors were Najma and Firoz Lalji. Benefactors were Ann L. Pryde, Carlo and Lalie Scandiuzzi. Patron Sponsor was Microsoft. Endowment Support from the Mimi Gates Asian Art Exhibition Endowment. Media Sponsor was Sound Publishing Inc.
Rama bends his bow, ca.1700, Kulu, Pahari, opaque watercolor on paper, 9 x 13 in., The San Diego Museum of Art, Edwin Binney 3rd Collection, Photograph courtesy The San Diego Museum of Art