To organise an international seminar, a museum needs goodwill and bonding with scholars and art collectors. Having successfully organised its first two-day seminar, TANSUKH, on Indian textiles in January 2017, the Museum decided to organise its second seminar, DAKHAN 2018, on Indian painting 12-13 January 2018. I am elated to publish eight papers presented in it. The theme of this seminar was little-known masters, centres, and collections of Indian painting. The idea was to bring to the notice of scholars, collectors, and young researchers of Indian painting the latest studies, discoveries, and fine collections that had not yet received much scholarly attention.
Fortunately, all ten invited scholars agreed to our request. For personal reasons, two speakers - Navina Haidar of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, and Mr Kuldeep Singh, a collector of Tanjavur paintings, New Delhi - could not send their papers for publication. I am happy to say that apart from the speakers, about a hundred art enthusiasts and students participated in this seminar.
The museum received substantial financial support from the Tata Trusts, Mumbai. This enabled us to hold the seminar in the fine ambience of the Hotel Taj Krishna, Hyderabad.
On 12 January, Museum Trustee Shri GV Sanjay Reddy and his wife, Mrs Pinky Reddy, organised a dance programme at their residence by the renowned Kuchipudi dancer Ms Deepika Reddy. It was followed by a sumptuous dinner. In the evening of the second day, participants were entertained by a famous Purulia Chau Dancers troupe. The acrobatic dancers, wearing masks impersonating peacock, lion, and buffalo, were a memorable treat to the art-loving participants.
As always, I offer my profound thanks to John Seyller, who presented a paper and volunteered to edit this volume. In annual visits to Hyderabad over the last fourteen years, John has spent countless hours working with me on the Museum's catalogues and editing them from his home in Vermont, USA. I have no words to express the depth of my gratitude to him.
I thank the museums and private collections for permitting the speakers to reproduce paintings from their collections in this volume.
I also wish to thank those whose cooperation and assistance made this publication possible. I wish to acknowledge P. Parameshwar Raju, a sensitive graphic artist and Museum Trustee, for the elegant book design; Kumara Guru for careful image editing; Anna Seyller, who patiently formatted the text and helped prepare it for publication,and Uma Devi, Publications and Public Relations Officer, and Naveen Kumar, CEO of the Museum, for managing all aspects of the publication's production. Special thanks, too, to P. Narendra and his team at Pragati Offset Private Limited, Hyderabad, for their personal and painstaking attention to the printing process. I am certain that the speakers will be pleased to see their papers well presented in this volume and know that others will benefit from their well-researched articles.
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