Category Archive: Uncategorized

International Women’s Day 2018

Today we celebrate and honor not only women and their inspiring contributions to our lives – past, present, and future – but all those who are a part of the continuous challenge of ensuring gender parity across the globe, from our own backyards to far off places. Achieving social, economic, cultural, and political equality is an issue that must concern all of us. Equality in education, capacity building, and full engagement in every sector of life must become our mantra and our focus. The way we treat one another is the way our future will be shaped.

 

Dance and GIS

Discover how science is helping to track the creative process and spatial relationships in dance using GIS. Tracking allows dancers to see only themselves or where they are in the group during performances. Storylines can be analyzed, refined, and improved with this system, and hotspot mapping can avoid dancers overusing given space on stage. Check it out at: https://goo.gl/NWPKMU Fascinating stuff!!

Dance Classes Begin

We’re thrilled to announce that we are adding a teen/adult Bollywood class to our current line-up this Fall. Our regular classes in Kathak I, II, and III, and Bollywood for children will continue to be offered on Sunday mornings. We are looking forward to a terrific new session, starting on September 17 at 10am. We hope to see all returning students and some new faces, too. Join us if you have a desire to have fun, dance, and learn! No matter what your skills or level, we have a class for you. Our high energy practices will keep you toned and fit, and our choreography is always original and challenging. Stay tuned for auditions for upcoming performances at local events, too. To register, go to: http://theindiaschool.com/class-schedule/ or call: 703-346-5877.

 

Happy Teej!

The women of Nepal are thronging Pashupatinath Temple in Kathmandu and their natal village homes to celebrate a unique festival which takes places each year in the month of Bhadau. Resplendent in their red saris, sindoor powder, glass bangles, and tilhari necklaces women sing and dance and perform cultural programs. The festival begins lasts for five days and includes prayer, fasting, puja, nightly vigils, and ritual bathing. You can see more here: https://goo.gl/pioa4W

A woman dance during Haritalika Teej Festival at Hanuman Dhoka Durbar Square in the capital on Thursday. During the festival, Nepalese Hindu women observe a day-long fast and pray for their husbands and for a happy married life. Those who are unmarried pray for a good husband. August 24, 2017. PHOTO/SANJOG MANANDHAR

“Buddha and Pedestal” from Myanmar (Burma)

While at the Crocker Museum, we strolled through the Asian galleries and found this small, but finely executed 19th century Buddha Shakyamuni (or Siddhartha Gautama, Lord Buddha). Such images are common in Bagan, Myanmar, but this one is unique in that the artist used marble for the head, hands, and feet, wood for the body, metal for the headdress, and leather for the flying scarves, along with glass inlay and lacquering. It is said that Indian King Ashoka sent Buddhist missionaries to Myanmar in the 3rd century BCE. Today the countrysides are dotted with stupas and monasteries, attesting to the importance of Buddhism in the country.

 

Meissen Porcelain at the Crocker Museum

China had perfected the art of porcelain manufacturing long before the West, and by the 17th century the Dutch East India Company was supplying Europe with these beautiful wares, which represented refinement, taste, culture, and social level. Meissen Porcelain Manufactory in Germany was the first company in Europe to develop hard-paste porcelain and take it to a completely different artistic level with a bold and broad use of color. Its signature company logo, the crossed swords, is one of the oldest trademarks in existence. Staatliche Porzellan-Manufaktur Meissen GmbH is still in business today and busy reinterpreting the art of china making. In 2012, Oregon artist Chris Antemann was invited to collaborate with Meissen porcelain makers in a new interpretation of the classic 1750 Meissen Love Temple by Joachim Kaendler, entitled “Forbidden Fruit”.

Through June 25, you can visit the incredibly magical display of Antemann and Meissen’s work in a sun room at the Crocker Museum https://www.crockerart.org/exhibitions/forbidden-fruit in Sacramento, CA. We were inspired and amused by the scenes of seduction and frivolity representing an 18th century banquet. Antemann’s whimsical figures are both naughty and charming.

 

 

Happy Holi!

Holi is celebrated this year on March 12 and 13, and people in Nepal, India, and Pakistan embrace the opportunity to paint one another with a brilliant palette of powdered colors and throw water balloons on unsuspecting passersby! The festival, also known as Phagu Purnima in Nepal, has a number of different legends associated with it: that of Holika and Prahlad, the son of Hiranyakshyap who was saved from a fiery death through his devotion to Lord Vishnu (a reaffirmation of the power of Good over Evil), Lord Krishna’s delight in playing pranks and painting color on Radha and the other gopis (milkmaids), and the death of Pootana, an ogress who tried to kill the infant Krishna with poisoned milk, among others.

Holi also celebrates the start of Spring and new beginnings, fresh colors and sunny days. holi-9

super color holi

Losar Tashi Delek!

Happy Tibetan New Year! The year of the Fire Rooster promises to be a big one (the last one was in 1957!) Those born under this sign possess some hallmark qualities for success: courage, perseverance, resourcefulness, talent, an observant nature, trustworthiness, compassion, and (especially important in the working world) an amazing sense of time management. Phew! Sounds pretty impressive. But even if you didn’t luck out as a Fire Rooster, no worries; just being around these amazing people is bound to rub off a little on the rest of us!

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Bada Dashain Begins in Nepal – Happy Ghatasthapana!

ghatasthapanainnepal

 

People are celebrating Ghatasthapana with the planting of barley, rice, wheat, and corn seeds in a clay pot as part of a puja, or offering, in their homes. Sprouted seedlings are called jamara and will be offered as part of tika on Vijaya Dashami, or the main festival day, which occurs in ten days time. The auspicious time for planting seeds has been determined to be 8:35 am. Dashain is the greatest of all Nepali festivals and a time for families to come together. It represents the triumph of Good over Evil.

Sheshnarayan Temple

Pharping lies in a beautiful green area beyond Chobar, and is highly sacred to Tibetan Buddhists and Hindus alike. There you will find Sheshnarayan, one of the four most revered temples of Narayan, or Vishnu, in Nepal. The area is steeped in a blend of religion and lore where caves and cliffs form the backdrop for myths and age-old practices and beliefs. A statue of Uma Maheshwor rises from one of the seven ponds as goldfish gently glide by. Legend says that long ago two snakes formed a bridge to help a priest cross a swift stream to the temple, and locals have thrown a forked branch into the pond every year to commemorate the event. Pharping was one of our favorite stops on the road to the inspiring Shree Dakshinkali temple.SheshnarayanTemple