The living art of India

Macquarie University's DR JULIAN DROOGAN presents a series of three lectures at the Art Gallery of NSW.

Reading Time: 3 minutes


Immerse yourself in the colourful, vibrant and transformative arts of India. Over three weeks we will dive into a world where art is not created only to be hung on walls or walled-up inside museums but is celebrated as part of rich daily life for almost a quarter of humanity.

Blending the religions, philosophies, history and arts of incredible India, we will explore statues that are gods, paintings that dance, and temples that channel the very energies of mother earth. Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, Sikhs and others have long used art as an expression of our place in a vast and dazzling cosmos. More than this, however, music, dance, painting, sculpture and architecture have been lovingly created as vehicles that shift our perceptions and that can transport us to other states of being. From Shiva’s dance to the Buddha’s enigmatic smile, the living arts of India are a beautiful and powerful window into a bigger world.

Dr Julian Droogan has a PhD in studies in religions from the University of Sydney and has conducted fieldwork across South Asia and the Middle East. He works currently at Macquarie University, where he lectures on the cultural and religious aspects of international security and terrorism studies. A regular presenter on the AGNSW’s lecture program, Julian has also led Art Gallery Society World Art Tours through India, the Silk Road, the Middle East and North Africa.

AGNSW follows the comprehensive COVID-Safe Plan in line with NSW Health guidelines.

For bookings and enquiries: 02 9225 1878

Duration 1-hour Location: Domain Theatre

The Art Gallery of New South Wales. Source: Canva
The Art Gallery of New South Wales. Source: Canva

Lecture details

Art of transformation and transcendence

Friday 9 April 2021 10:30am – 11:30am

Saturday 10 April 2021 10:30am – 11:30am

The traditional arts of India are often thought of as synonymous with yoga, transcendence and mysticism. However, they are also deeply rooted in a love of the world that is grounded in the earthiness of India. This week we enter the celestial realms accessed through Indian art, and ask – do all mountain paths really lead to the one summit?

Art of the divine feminine

Friday 16 April 2021 10:30am – 11:30am

Saturday 17 April 2021 10:30am – 11:30am

India is the birthplace of a million gods, at least half of which are female. This week we look at the arts and architecture of the divine feminine, who’s power is said to impregnate the very earth. From Goddess worship to magic, art has been a dynamic way to empower the body and access realms beyond normal experience.

Arts of love, devotion and ecstasy

Friday 23 April 2021 10:30am – 11:30am

Saturday 24 April 2021 10:30am – 11:30am

For centuries, Indian mystics have used the creative arts of devotional love poetry, painting, dance and music to access altered states of consciousness and experiences of the transcendent. Poets and painters have combined Hindu and Islamic sensibilities to create arts that elevate the individual to the real of the divine.

READ ALSO: An artistic feminist protest by Rakini Devi

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