The exquisite bronze sculptures of National Museum constitute one of the most important and representative collections in India. Apart from depicting iconographic details from the Indian pantheon of deities, the objects portray high level of technical excellence in metallurgy and bronze casting through 5th to the 17th centuries that continues till date.
The newly renovated Bronze Gallery has nice sections showcast8ing regional artefacts from North India, Central India, Western India, Eastern India and South India. In addition, delicately cast images of Saints and Poets, Goddesses, Buddhist and Jain images and deities from Nepal and Tibet are also on display. Masterpieces from Phophnar (Madhya Pradesh), Nalanda (Bihar), Rajasthan, Gujarat, Nepal, Kashmir, Tamil Nadu and Kerala are of particular interest as they cover a wide range of stylistic features that have been seen through the development of Bronze art in India.
The selection of objects in the new gallery and their description allow visitors to understand the history and charm of Indian bronze- influences, technological marvels and focus on how these images were used in temples, home-shrines or in ritual. The Gallery was under renovations since 2011 and has been re-opened on 18th December, 2015 for the public with a view to share with visitors the rich artistic and technological accomplishments that India was home to.
This catalogue with 98 choicest objects is an attempt to collate knowledge on the collection in a simple and accessible manner for visitors to enjoy and learn from.
The catalogue was due to be released on the day of inauguration but it was not done on that day. After heavy demand from visitors, professionals, curators and publication. I am thankful to him for his initiatives and interest shown.
I would like to express my heartiest gratitude to Shri Tejpal Singh. Deputy Curator, Archaeology and Shri Sanjib Kumar Singh, Archaeologist & Museologist as well as Production Officer for their meticulous research. Shri Sanjib Kumar Singh has already written some books for the National Museum. Dr Sadashiv Gorakshkar, former Tagore Fellow at National Museum and Dr Sharada Srinivasan deserve our sincere thanks for their research on the collection which has enriched the text.
I hope the permanent Bronze Gallery at National Museum will be seen and enjoyed with renewed interest by scholars, students, young visitors, museum lovers and people from all walks of life.
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