A … The British Museum’s tantra exhibition. 27 Aug 2020 - 12 Jan 2021 Find out more about Edmund de Waal: library of exile Tantra today. Tantra figured strongly in the counter cultures of the 60s and in exhibitions like that created by Philip Rawson at the Hayward Gallery in 1971 and expanded in his books in 1973. A radical philosophy that transformed the religious, cultural, and political landscape of India and beyond is explored in a landmark new exhibition at the British Museum. Tantra set out to shock and to offend the prudish, the powerful and conservative, and continues to do so. Source material for this can be found earlier in the exhibition. Europe ; United Kingdom (UK) ... Chris W wrote a review Nov 2020. The Hindus: an alternative history. A British artist of Balinese descent, Sinta Tantra was born in New York in 1979. ‘Tantra: enlightenment to revolution’ exhibition at the British Museum until 24 January 2021 ‘Before you drink from a skull’ said Manisha Ma Bhairavi, ‘you must first find the right corpse.’ That is the arresting start of William Dalrymple’s account of Tantra in his ‘Nine Lives: In search of the sacred in modern India.’ [Dalrymple 2009]… 2004. Review ‘Going with the flow’ TLS May 21. Support tQ's work by becoming a subscriber and enjoy the benefits of bonus essays, podcasts and exclusively-commissioned new music. Visitors cluster around objects with the highest Victorian shock-value – like a Tantric temple frieze sculpture carved of stone, with the dynamic, arched form of a woman receiving oral sex (an actual example of yoni puja). A new philosophy emerged in India from about 500AD, defined in Tantras, religious dialogues written down in Sanskrit, some of the oldest copies of which are in the British Museum’s first new exhibition since lockdown. We needed a fresh look: the last exhibition on Tantra in London was 50 years ago so this new show at the BM is very welcome. London: Penguin. There are several prints by Hapshash and the Coloured Coat, a multimedia outfit that created sexual imagery drawing from Tibetan Buddhist yab-yum symbology in service of psychedelic sublimation. This isn’t just erotic art – it’s a religious masterpiece. British Museum exhibition review: Tantra enlightenment to revolution 24 Sep 2020 – 24 Jan 2021 Activities Great Indoors Published on Monday, 12 October 2020 10:27 Last Updated on 13 October 2020 Monica Costa 0 Comments. This is an art of shock and awe, of violence, bloodshed and ecstatic laughter. Tantra encourages veneration of the body in its many forms and states, often incorporating matter that might otherwise be considered taboo: alcohol, bhang, sexual fluids, blood, human remains. The exhibition draws connections with Sufism, a form of Islamic mysticism that possesses similar concepts of self-obliteration through ishq, or divine, fervent love. £35.00. Steps outside the exhibition, trinkets ‘made in India,’ perfumed candles, and dyed tote bags are for sale, intimations of our answer. Tantra: enlightenment to revolution is at the British Museum, London, until 24 January 2021. Review of The British Museum. The novelist and activist Arundhati Roy explores many tantric themes in her novel, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness 2017] much of which takes place in a graveyard. Catskill, NY: Siglio Press. Dimensions: 2450mm x 2220mm. London Tourism; ... Just remember to arrange general admission before the allotted time slot to the Tantra exhibition. Yet in our age of globalist neoliberalism, given an increasingly conservative, patriarchal Hindu nationalist trajectory in India (set in motion by Britain’s colonial legacy), there’s an overwhelming tone-deafness to the Museum’s assertion that “The rebellious spirit of Tantra remains ripe for the reimagining.” Perhaps it’s unsurprising for an institution that still refuses to repatriate blatant spoils of colonial plunder. They were letting people queue and enter regardless of time slot once inside it was super crowded and packed. It ranges from stone friezes of Durga slaughtering the buffalo demon Mahisha, thought to provide rulers with similar battlefield success, to more modern works, like Sutapa Biswas’s Housewives with Steak-Knives, a 1985 painting of a goddess Kali dressed in a printed tunic, her body unconventionally naturalistic. 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A new philosophy emerged in India from about 500AD, defined in Tantras, religious dialogues written down in Sanskrit, some of the oldest copies of which are in the British Museum… British Museum announces new tantra exhibition after five years of research and insists it will be about more than yoga and marathon seven-hour sex sessions Tantra exhibition at the British Museum focuses on themes including well-being It explores female power, gender fluidity, religious pluralism and mindfulness Tantra: Enlightenment To Revolution opens after 5 years of […] Amy Butterworth illustrates the commonly misinterpreted term, Tantra and the framework in which its exhibition was developed Upon my first delving into the Tantra movement, following the announcement by the British Museum on their exhibition showcasing the ancient philosophy, I couldn’t help but think: why is everyone talking about Sting? Siva is shown here in one painting as part male and female for example. Political leaders who drew upon Tantra were attracted to its twofold promise of material and spiritual wealth. Reviewed 4 weeks ago . ‘Tantra: enlightenment to revolution’ exhibition at the British Museum until 24 January 2021 ‘Before you drink from a skull’ said Manisha Ma Bhairavi, ‘you must first find the right corpse.’ That is the arresting start of William Dalrymple’s account of Tantra in his ‘Nine Lives: In search of the sacred in modern India.’ [Dalrymple 2009]… Hands raised, she carries a flower and flag print of Artemisia Gentileschi’s Judith Slaying Holofernes, homaging a sparse lineage of female artists. Tantra: enlightenment to revolution. Reclaiming the body from shameful associations is a worthy endeavour, and the urgency of environmental and anti-capitalist activism of course should not be denied. Thus, attain enlightenment by applying oneself most diligently to the activity of erotic play. Electric turquoise and royal blue shroud a warm embryo of fuschia, orange, and yellow, a chromatic apotheosis. The Bloomsbury Companion to Hindu Studies. London: Thames and Hudson. London: Bloomsbury. Instead, it asserts that women embody Shakti, the energy that comprises the entire universe. She studied at the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London 1999-2003 and at the Royal Academy Schools London 2004-06. The last two exhibits would give a Victorian archdeacon in Calcutta serious palpitations and one wonders how his wife might have reacted to such ferocious images of female power. From the press release for the exhibition: Tantra: Enlightenment to Revolution The British Museum, London, 24 September -- 24 January 2021 Curated by Imma Ramos A radical philosophy that transformed the religious, cultural, and political landscape of India and beyond is explored in a landmark new exhibition at the British Museum. Then there are mithuna carvings of couples in erotic poses, which aren’t explicitly Tantric but evoke its divine sensuality: lovers caressing each other, lips suspended in the moment before a kiss. Exploring the art of Tantra today In this discussion led by the Royal College of Art's Rebecca Heald, hear contemporary artists explore the influence of Tantra in their work. It’s especially rewarding to see many familiar pieces from the BM’s Hotung Gallery displays retagged and juxtaposed here. Tantra: enlightenment to revolution, a new exhibition at the British Museum that runs through 24 January 2021, attempts to add nuance and context to Tantra’s Western interpretation through an impressive array of aesthetic and devotional objects spanning over a millennia. The paintings they create range from anatomically dubious to absurdist, and the whole charade inserts a dose of exoticism into the culture of individualist self-love off which neoliberal capitalism profits, and for which scripted “reality” television acts as an aperture. The ego needs to be trampled underfoot. © The Syndics of Cambridge University Library. The philosophy challenged orthodox Hindu and Buddhist bifurcations of the world into categories of sacred and profane, along with patriarchal understandings of the female body as an impediment to enlightenment. The philosophy then spread throughout Asia by both diplomatic means and pilgrimage, as travellers returned from its eastern Indian epicentre bearing material objects – sculptures, texts, devotional items – that facilitated ideological dissemination, as Tantric schools appeared in China, Tibet, and Japan. A Tantra exhibition is set to open at the British Museum and promises to 'be about more than just sex and yoga.' If you are looking for insights into Sting and Tom Hanks’ favourite love practice you’ll be disappointed because this is more a showcase of the ancient philosophy behind the contemporary practical spin. The British Museum 4 Sep 2020–24 Jan 2021. ... ©The Trustees of the British Museum. Male compassion and female wisdom need to mingle. We went to the Tantra exhibition. 21 Jan 2021 Tantra’s triumphant feminine power at the British Museum The influential Indian spiritual tradition is celebrated in an exhibition touching on life, sex and death The women delight in the gimmick, giggling while struggling to pronounce ‘yoni puja’ (it’s not particularly non-phonetic). A philosophy originating in medieval India, Tantra has been linked to successive waves of revolutionary thought, from its sixth-century transformation of Hinduism and Buddhism, to the Indian fight for independence and the rise of 1960s… Tantra exhibition review: An enjoyable journey on the road to enlightenment. The exhibition showcases over 100 objects including masterpieces of sculptures, paintings, prints and ritual objects, depicting the history and evolution of tantric philosophy since AD 500 -- when it emerged in India for the first time. Tantra (British Museum) enlightenment to revolution Imma Ramos. Tantra: Enlightenment to Revolution The British Museum, London, 24 September — 24 January 2021. Good to see that the British Museum has reopened after the Covid19 lockdown. DHA have recently completed work on the British Museum’s latest exhibition – Tantra: enlightenment to revolution. Tantra: enlightenment to revolution will be the first major exhibition in the UK focusing on the history of Tantra and its global impact. Untitled, Ghulam Rasool Santosh, Delhi, India, 1970s. Tantra: enlightenment to revolution, a new exhibition at the British Museum that runs through 24 January 2021, attempts to add nuance and context to Tantra’s Western interpretation through an impressive array of aesthetic and devotional objects spanning over a millennia. From the press release for the exhibition:. Nine Lives: In search of the sacred in modern India. The Art of Tantra. ( Log Out /  New British Museum exhibition to show Tantra is about more than sex Safety measures such as reduced capacity, increased cleaning and a one-way route around the … Print depicting the goddess Kali, Calcutta Art Studio, Kolkata (Bengal, India), about 1885–95. Today, 200 years of shifting interpretations have left many misconceptions about what Tantra is, or what it actually involves. Dalrymple, William. Each woman stands naked in a wooden cubicle with nothing but a hand mirror, as an intimacy coach encourages the group to examine their vaginas, to vocally observe what they see before painting them. Venice, Italy 409 contributions 180 helpful votes. Date of experience: October 2020. But the exhibition features clearly appropriative paintings by artists like Penny Slinger, who had no actual training in the divine philosophy of Tantra and were interested solely in its transgressive aesthetics, the provocative sensuality it exudes. Thus, attain enlightenment by applying oneself most diligently to the activity of erotic play. Created as a ‘space to sit and read and be,’ library of exile is an installation by British artist and writer, Edmund de Waal. Chakrasamvara (Wheel of Bliss) Tantra, India, AD 700–800 . ... to the check in crew for not only the main admission but also the special Tantra exhibition. The goddess’s neck is adorned with a garland bearing the heads of dictators. Please whitelist our site in order to continue to access The Quietus. Chapter 15. But can Tantra actually offer its uninformed Western spectant a weapon for praxis, or is it just playing into neo-imperial allure of the exotic? Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. [Tantra, Arts Council of Great Britain, p.5] Turning now to the ongoing British Museum exhibition, it is largely based on their own collection and a few loan items from other Western collections on Tantra, and seems to be organized without any very significant input from India. Explore the radical force that transformed the religious, cultural and political landscape of India and beyond in this landmark exhibition. There is an essential ambiguity also about gender at the heart of Tantra: men made much of the art and wrote many of the texts; they worship Tantric goddesses yet clearly and not surprisingly can also feel threatened by Tantra and its potential for powerful women in everyday life, not least their own homes, especially when wielding steak knives and supported by yoginis and the reassurance of goddesses like Kali and Durga, triumphing where male gods had failed. Tantra at the British Museum A short review of the exhibition 'Tantra: enlightenment to revolution' which is currently on at the British Museum. Carrellas, Barbara .2017. This is my exhibition review of Tantra: enlightenment to revolution, at the British Museum. Centring on the power of divine feminine energy, Tantra inspired the dramatic rise of goddess worship in medieval India and continues to influence contemporary feminist thought and artistic practice. Michell, George et al. Tantra (British Museum) enlightenment to revolution Imma Ramos. The British Museum, London: Hours, Address, The British Museum Reviews: 4.5/5. Tantra: enlightenment to revolution runs 23 April-26 July 2020 at The British Museum. Yet the show’s curation seems to suggest that due to its underlying revolutionary spirit, Tantra possesses some latent key to our contemporary period of political unrest. ... ©The Trustees of the British Museum. First major exhibition in the UK focusing on the history of Tantra, a radical philosophy that transformed the religious, cultural and political landscape of India and beyond. The texts are exemplary and the selection visual rather than archaeological. Emeryville, CA: Ten Speed Press. The iconography of Hindu goddesses makes these political connections explicit and is featured prominently throughout the show. All rights reserved, DACS 2019, At the end of the first season of Netflix’s raunchy reality series Too Hot to Handle, which saw attractive singles living in a beachside Mexican resort attempt the purportedly herculean task of restraining their sexual impulses to win a $100,000 cash prize, the six final women participate in a ‘yoni puja’ workshop. You need to pre book a ticket-easy as website works smoothly Take care to arrive at the allocated time- then entry is smooth and easy. by alixgeddes 15th Oct 2020 14th Oct 2020. Curated by Imma Ramos. Yoni puja is really a devotional practice from the medieval Indian philosophy of Tantra, and its appropriation on Too Hot to Handle exemplifies its constant misinterpretation in the West, along the same homogenizing lines that have charged sacred Indian practices like kama sutra with orientalist impressions of hypersexual hedonism. The tradition of Tantra, as we learn from a newly opened exhibition at the British Museum (until 24 January 2021), has always been transgressive. The exhibition -- Tantra: enlightenment to revolution -- is scheduled to take place at the British Museum from September 24, 2020, till January 24, 2021. What she calls ‘softcore’ is the disapproving official view in India today- that it’s all symbolic. The British Museum's major exhibition for spring 2020 is devoted to the Tantras, sacred Indian texts from the 6th century that shaped the meditational and devot Doniger, Wendy. It reflects what another Indian woman artist has asserted: ’woman-hatred is entrenched in the…framework of most societies and pervades most cultures to the point of being celebrated’ [Jagit Chuhan in ‘Beyond Frontiers’ eds Ghosh and Lamba, Saffron 2001]. You can see the appeal. Ever since Sting boasted that he could go for “four or five hours” by practising tantric sex, the Indian philosophy has been linked with amorous pop stars.The British Museum gave the musician a It wasn't safe and we left as it was impossible to manage safe distancing. In the Image of Man. It’s derived from the sacred instructional texts, the Tantras, which offer insight into certain anti-establishment, transgressive rituals that – when carried out correctly, and with guidance from a guru – can grant access to this power, manifested both temporally and supernaturally, like longevity and spiritual enlightenment. Please review and manage your cookie settings. 2020. Whilst the British Museum may seem an unlikely place to hold a Tantra Exhibition, I was impressed with their effort and found the exhibition compelling. Please review and manage your cookie settings. Buy. The Bagri Foundation is pleased to be lead supporter of Tantra: enlightenment to revolution, an exhibition which explores the wider, lesser-known philosophies of this belief system and its impact throughout history. Last Updated 23 January 2020 Some of the show’s highlights are Indian Neo-Tantric works like Prafulla Mohanti’s Kalika. The British Museum takes us into the world of Tantra in a fascinating blockbuster exhibition that’s filled with stunning artefacts — though there's … The British Museum takes us into the world of Tantra in a fascinating blockbuster exhibition that’s filled with stunning artefacts — though there's still plenty of sex. Poor old Sting: while Jagger makes the catalogue for Tantra: Enlightenment to Revolution, a conscientious new exhibition featuring around 130 artefacts at the British Museum… At its inception, Tantra had crucial political implications. 2011. [Michell et al, 1982] Indefatigable and controversial Hinduist Wendy Doniger characterises writers like Rawson and David Gordon White as ‘hard core’ believing that what is described in texts and art actually happened whether involving corpses, ashes, bodily fluids or endless ecstatic sex. Tuis blogs Die tantra-uitstalling van die British Museum. ‘Yoni,’ a Sanskrit word, roughly translates as vulva, and ‘puja’ as worship. Tantra is not independent of Hinduism and Buddhism but has pervaded and transformed both traditions from its inception. What's on Exhibitions Tantra: enlightenment to revolution. … Supported by the Bagri Foundation, Tantra: enlightenment to revolution (April 23 to July 26, 2020) will chart the rise and spread of Tantra, a set of beliefs and rituals that first emerged in India around AD 500. ( Log Out /  Urban Tantra: Sacred Sex for the Twenty-First Century. Explore the radical force that transformed the religious, cultural and political landscape of India and beyond in this landmark exhibition. ©The Trustees of the British Museum. This exhibition and its book help us understand why and how it is alive today. It arose during a period of civic instability in the Indian subcontinent, and thus much of its iconography features a defiant Shiva, the Hindu god who is destroyer of the universe, often depicted in Yogic poses and tinged with blue. British Museum has announced new exhibition 'Tantra: enlightenment to revolution'! ... About halfway round the British Museum’s new exhibition is an object that makes me feel very weedy indeed. 2009. Rawson, Philip 1973a. The myth of Bhairava . Tantra: enlightenment to revolution review — sacred sex, subversion and, phew, no sign of Sting British Museum. You'd never know we are in the middle of a pandemic. Tantric culture and tradition are as alive as ever today, as the comprehensive and exhaustive exhibition at the British Museum shows. The British Museum's major exploration of Tantric art and iconography hovers uncomfortably between aesthetics and exoticism, finds Nicole-Ann Lobo, Sutapa Biswas, Housewives with Steak-Knives, 1985. Frazier, Jessica [ed.]. Tantra hasn’t lost its appeal either to downtrodden women or western orientalism. Tickets cost £15 and booking ahead is recommended. You can see the appeal. The exhibition begins with a subtle nod to Mick Jagger [the iconic red tongue is Kali’s] and ends with the era of flower power- the Coltranes, Allen Ginsberg- and contemporary women artists all responding to Tantra. It … It is the very first time the British Museum – which houses one of the biggest and most comprehensive collections of Tantric material in the world – will explore this subject in an exhibition. An early ‘Tantra’ from Nepal. It is open from 24th September 2020 – 24th January 2021. The tradition of Tantra, as we learn from a newly opened exhibition at the British Museum (until 24 January 2021), has always been transgressive. Just remember to arrange general admission before the allotted time slot to the Tantra exhibition. Let’s get one thing straight — it’s not all about sex. Date of experience: October 2020. London: Thames and Hudson. The British Museum has unveiled plans for a Tantra exhibition – insisting it will be about more than sex and yoga. This is the kind of exhibition the BM can do almost entirely from its own collections and those of     the British Library, but there are some exciting loans here also. The British Museum today released tickets to its first two new exhibitions to open since lockdown. Tantric culture and tradition are as alive as ever today, as the comprehensive and exhaustive exhibition at the British Museum shows. As a wholly independent publication, we rely entirely on our ad bookings to keep The Quietus going. Tantra Song: Tantric Painting from Rajasthan. Jamme, Franck Andre. Chamunda dancing on a corpse, Madhya Pradesh, Central India, 800s. Tantra exhibition review: An enjoyable journey on the road to enlightenment ... New British Museum exhibition to show Tantra is about more than sex. At the more figural end, paintings by the Kashmiri artist Ghulam Rasool Santosh embody the union of Shiva and Shakti, combining the transcendental nature of Tantric sexuality with a geometric reduction of form. ( Log Out /  The British Museum has reopened with a very interesting exhibition about Tantra. Only the ground floor open and a signposted route to follow. [Doniger 2004] She discusses Tantra and related sects at greater length in The Hindus: an alternative history. In between we are taken by the hand and led through a potentially overwhelming thicket of ideas practice and imagery; and we glimpse the spread of Tantra across Asia in Tibet and Japan. Chakrasamvara (Wheel of Bliss) Tantra, India, AD 700–800 . British Museum, LondonEmbraced by the 60s counterculture including the Rolling Stones, the ancient spiritual philosophy of Tantra finds enlightenment not just in sex but death On a stone relief from 11th-century India, a moustached man is enthusiastically pleasuring his lover. Tantra at the British Museum . Tantra – the Indian cult of ecstasy. Tantra first arose around 500 AD, and its core assertion is that the material world is infused with divine feminine power. Reviews 'This wonderful catalogue is not merely a supplement to the exhibition - or even a replacement for those who had to miss it in the lockdown - but a great resource, a gateway to learn more about the wider context of Tantra… As a worldview, philosophy and set of practices, Tantra is as alive as ever. ‘Before you drink from a skull’ said Manisha Ma Bhairavi, ‘you must first find the right corpse.’ That is the arresting start of William Dalrymple’s account of Tantra in his ‘Nine Lives: In search of the sacred in modern India.’ [Dalrymple 2009] It reflects one end of the spectrum of Tantra as seen in the West. The show explores ‘the radical force that transformed the religious, cultural and political landscape of India and beyond’. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. Medium: oil, acrylics, pencil, collage, white tape on paper on canvas. A RADICAL philosophy that transformed the religious, cultural and political landscape of India and beyond will be explored in a landmark new exhibition at the British Museum.. The 1974 painting evokes the Bindu chakra, the underlying seed of creation. The reverence attached to sexual imagery underscores one of the show’s most emphatic messages about Tantra: pleasure is tapped into for a higher purpose, and is not an end in itself. Buy. The British Museum: fantastic - See 72,633 traveler reviews, 37,869 candid photos, and great deals for London, UK, at Tripadvisor. The British Museum has reopened with a very interesting exhibition about Tantra. ( Log Out /  Tantra exhibition review: An enjoyable journey on the road to enlightenment ... New British Museum exhibition to show Tantra is about more than sex. 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