New York's Newest Museum: RMA of Himalayan Art


New York's Newest Museum : TVMAof * nimaCay an * Art Rivka Rass It was bizarre listening to Buddhist monks chant on a quiet Saturday morning in a New York City street . The chants greeted the opening of the new Rubin Museum of Art , situated in the heart of Chelsea , New York ' s artistic neighborhood . The new museum is dedicated to the unique and mysterious art and culture of the Himalayas . What used to be Barney ' s , a well-known department store , has been transformed into the Rubin Museum , or RMA in short , the ninth biggest museum in this city of many museums , and certainly the most modern and technologically sophisticated . It promises to be an international center for the appreciation and preservation of the art and culture of the Himalayas , including the art of Buddhism , Hinduism , Bon and Jainism . The new , six-story museum is aesthetically riveting and overwhelming in its rich display of art . At the very center of the museum , an impressive , broad marble staircase spirals up to the sixth floor . Emphasis is on the details , on the scheme of colors - mainly warm hues of red which play harmoniously with the rich colors of the mandalas , tankras , hanging scrolls and sculptures dating from the 2 to the 1 9 century . In addition , the museum offers interactive galleries , intense educational workshops and public programs , and an elegant cafe with Himalayan cuisine . The initiators of the idea and its benefactors are Shelley and Donald Rubin , long collectors of Himalayan art , who bought the Barney's building , transformed it and donated their rich collection of art works . Armed with an electronic guide , we take the elevator to the sixth and top floor . Immediately we enter a completely different world in terms of its aesthetics , philosophy and outlook on life . It offers another interpretation of man's raison d ' etre . How refreshing ! How magical , colorful , and alluring ! It would be preposterous to claim that even with the help of the electronic guide , the magnifying glasses found on every floor , and the texts accompanying the art works , we could decode the mysteries of what we saw . I wish that the texts could be richer ; that they would reveal more knowledge and shed more light on the unique artistic language of the works . Nevertheless , we could intuitively experience the inner richness , harmony and beauty , and sense that these works are there not just to satisfy our aesthetic longing , but that there is deeper meaning and knowledge reserved for the initiates . It is clear : there is another world , profound , complex and mysterious , a world of multi-narratives hidden inside these works Indian Adept ( mahasiddha ) - Kanha ( of the East ) , Tibet , 1500-1599 Collection of Rubin Museum of Art

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