Fifty art pieces donated by Lahore Museum
Exhibition intended to promote Pakistan as an art-loving country
By Ali Usman
LAHORE : An exhibition of sculptures and artwork from the Gandhara Civilization, made up of exhibits from Pakistan museums, will be held in Germany in November to promote the country’s rich civilization and encourage tourists to visit it.
Fifty art pieces have been donated by the Lahore Museum, which boasts one of the richest art collections of the Gandhara Civilization. The exhibits are scheduled for display in the cities of Berlin, Bonn and Zurich. Earlier, the exhibition was scheduled was only Berlin and Bonn, but German authorities have requested the Pakistan government that they be displayed in Zurich also. The exhibition also includes art pieces from the Taxila Museum, the National Museum of Pakistan, Karachi and others. Information, Culture and Youth Affairs Secretary Orya Jan Maqbool, Lahore Museum Director Ashgar Nadeedm Syed, and Lahore Museum Gandhara Section head will travel to Germany with the exhibit for its inauguration. The inaugural ceremony is expected for November 22 and the exhibit will span a period of two months.
Art-loving : Lahore Museum Director Asghar Nadeem Syed told Daily Times that the exhibition would promote the image of the country as an art-loving country. He said that the Gandhara Civilization was one of the richest civilizations of the world and the people in the West were quite keen to learn of it through art. He said that the exhibition would help present Pakistan as a country whose roots lay in the world’s richest civilization.
The Lahore Museum is one of the leading museums of South Asia. It contains an excellent collection of Gandhara sculpture. It also has the masterpiece of Fasting Buddha. The museum has been a great attraction for the tourists, however, the number of tourists have declined in the past few years. The authorities concerned believe that by exhibiting the country’s rich collections of art and civilization in foreign land, tourism to the country can increase once again.
Gandhara art is renowned across the world. It is believed that during the 2nd Century BC, Buddhism flourished and prevailed for over 1,000 years. During this time, Taxila, Swat and Charsaddah became three important centres for culture, trade and learning. Hundreds of monasteries and stupas were built. From these centers, a unique art of sculpture known as Gandhara art originated. Gandhara sculptures have a prominent place in the museums of England, France, Germany, USA, Japan, Korea, China, India and Afghanistan.