A Sculpture of Hindu deity Lord Shiva in Nataraja form will reportedly be dedicated at the outdoor sculpture garden of Birmingham Museum of Art (BMA) in Alabama on April 10, 2016. In the age-old tradition of lost-wax casting, this bronze sculpture in the 30,000 square feet sculpture garden is 65 inches tall, reports suggest. Nataraja (lord of the dance), is a form of Shiva (Lord Shiva, along with Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu, forms the great triad of Hindu deities) expressed through his anandatandava. BMA’s another exhibit, “So Close to Heaven: Sacred Sculpture”, contains images of various Hindu deities, including Venugopala, Bhairava, Garuda.
Commending BMA for installing Lord Shiva and showcasing other Hindu artifacts, Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada today, said that art had a long and rich tradition in Hinduism and ancient Sanskrit literature talked about religious paintings of deities on wood or cloth. Rajan Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, urged major art museums of the world, including Musee du Louvre and Musee d’Orsay of Paris, Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, Los Angeles Getty Center, Uffizi Gallery of Florence (Italy), Art Institute of Chicago, Tate Modern of London, Prado Museum of Madrid, National Gallery of Art in Washington DC, etc., to frequently organize Hindu art focused exhibitions, thus sharing the rich Hindu art heritage with the rest of the world.
On 3.9 acres, BMA, which claims itself as “one of the finest regional museums in the United States”, was founded in 1951 and is owned by
City of Birmingham. Its collection includes over 26,000 paintings, sculpture, prints, drawings, and decorative arts; and its Mission includes “to provide an unparalleled cultural and educational experience to a diverse community”. Gail Andrews is the Director, Dr. Donald A. Wood is the Curator of Asian Art; while William A. Bell Senior is Birmingham Mayor.
Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal. There are about three million Hindus in USA.