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Asian Art and History

The Hindu God Krishna in Early Cambodia

Signature Event Space

Image detail of artwork representing the lecture
Sonya Rhie Mace - Image of the lecturer in a promotional photo
Jan 23, 10:30am
Signature Event Space 10:30am
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Asian Art and History
The Hindu God Krishna in Early Cambodia

Artis—Naples Lifelong Learning

Sonya Rhie Mace, Ph.D., George P. Bickford Curator of Indian and Southeast Asian Art, Cleveland Museum of Art

During the centuries when Hinduism began to be practiced in Southeast Asia, between the 500s to 700s CE, local artists created monumental sandstone sculptures of Krishna, several of which survive to this day. One example from a cave temple on a sacred mountain in the Mekong River delta is in the collection of the Cleveland Museum of Art. The curator of the recent exhibition Revealing Krishna: Journey to Cambodia’s Sacred Mountain will discuss how she understands the role of Krishna in early Cambodian religious and visual culture. She will explain how the Cambodian vision of Krishna relates with counterparts in India and how regional artists and patrons envisioned Krishna in a new way, as part of the local ecological landscape.

This presentation is part of the Asian Art and History series.

Image: Krishna Lifting Mount Govardhan (detail), c. 600. Southern Cambodia, Takeo Province, Phnom Da. Sandstone with remains of lacquer and gilding; 188 (without 43 cm tenon) x 68 x 42 cm. National Museum of Cambodia, Phnom Penh, Ka.1641. Photo: Konstanty Kulik.

Sonya Rhie Mace

Sonya Rhie Mace

Sonya Rhie Mace is the George P. Bickford curator of Indian and Southeast Asian art at the Cleveland Museum of Art and adjunct professor of art history at Case Western Reserve University. She received her Ph.D. at Harvard University in the history of Indian and South Asian art in 1999, and the book based on her dissertation, History of Early Stone Sculpture at Mathura (c. 150 BCE – 100 CE), was published in 2007. Since 2004, she has organized major exhibitions on topics pertaining to Mughal painting, Cambodian sculpture, Indian modernism and tantra in Buddhist art. She continues to write and lecture widely on aspects of early Indian sculpture, medieval manuscripts and the role of museums with respect to issues of cultural property and repatriation.


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