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Devangana Desai Listings

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1 Devangana Desai
Art and Icon: Essays on Early Indian Art
Aryan Books International; New Delhi, India; 2013; 817305438X / 9788173054389; First Edition; Hardcover; New; New; 
The author's love for ancient Indian art and several years of intensive research are reflected in the essays included in this book. The essays cover a wide spectrum, from the sensuous to the sublime, from an analysis of narrative Ramayana sculptures, to a discussion of the relevance of Tantrism to erotic temple sculpture, to a study of ancient terracottas in a socio-cultural context. Art and Icon brings together for the first time 16 selected essays from the 90 that Dr. Devangana Desai has written over a period of 35 years, many of which are not easily accessible. These have been edited and updated with new material. The essays are divided into six sections: i) Approaches to Art, ii) Terracotta Art, iii) Iconography, iv) Iconology and Meaning in Art, v) Art and Eroticism, and vi) Narrative Art. Icons and images, sacred objects of veneration, are generally guided by elaborate rules and conventions detailing their size, sitting or standing postures and hand gestures. Artists have more flexibility when depicting non-iconic subjects. However, the line between art and icon is rather thin as is evident in some magnificent images published in this book. The author reveals the interrelationships and interactions between various fields of art - sculpture, dance and narration of stories - as can be noticed particularly in the articles on the dancing Ganesa, the auspicious motifs of Salabhanjika (woman-and-tree) and surasundari (celestial nymph), and the figures in the narrative sculptural panels. The article ''The Temple as an Ordered Whole - The Iconic Scheme at Khajuraho'' is a significant contribution to an iconological study of temple art. This well-illustrated book will be valuable to scholars as well as students of Indian art and will also appeal to general readers. Printed Pages: 334 with 21 figures & maps & 186 halftone illustrations. 100118

Price: 70.00 USD
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2 Devangana Desai
Erotic Sculpture of India. A Socio-cultural Study
Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Pvt. Ltd.; New Delhi, India; 1985; 8121500184 / 9788121500180; Second Revised Edition; Cloth; New; New; 
Erotic sculpture around places of worship of any society would require an explanation. Its unignorable presence outside Hindu temples when the religion itself has been known for its other-worldly ideals and spiritual aspirations has both astonished and puzzled visitors. The Brahmin panda (guide) accompanying the inquisitive tourist at sites like Bhubaneswar or Konarak as well as the scholarly Hindu steeped in a less free later day morality find the anomaly embarrassing and proffer idealistic explanations in which sexual expression is interpreted either as a symbolic representation of Eternal Bliss or as the overt manifestation of kama, the third purusartha. Such explanations fail to account for themes like orgies and bestiality and the vast upsurge in sexual depiction in sculpture between AD 900 and 1400. What is the rationale of erotic depictions in religious art? What is their thematic content? Is erotic sculpture confined to temples of particular religious cults? Could esoteric Tantrikas display their own secret practices? This inquiry is concerned as much with the question of religious sanction as with the sociological factors generating the permissive atmosphere and mood for the depiction of sexual motifs. The proliferation of feudal chiefs and rulers, their interest in temple-building, the feudalization of temple institution and its growing wealth and power, the degeneration of devadasi (sacred, prostitution) system are found to be some of the medieval developments responsible for the profuse display of eroticism. Eroticism in sculpture is compared with the dominant themes in the other modes of art prevalent during the period. The present study examines practically the entire corpus of the empirical material on erotic motives and action over the period from the third century BC to the fifteenth century AD. In the course of the examination the author brings to light a wide variety of themes in the erotic sculpture of India. The illustrations represent prominently the lesser known sites like Bavka, Modhera, Bagali, etc., along with familiar sites like Khajuraho, Konarak and Bhubaneswar and are not merely illustrative; they throw up questions for examination to begin with, and serve also as supporting evidence for the argument advanced. In the present edition the bibliography is upto dated and new illustrations added with notes. Printed Pages: 287 with 157 b/w illustrations and 26 line drawings. 033767

Price: 23.95 USD
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3 Devangana Desai and Arundhati Banerji (eds)
Kaladarpana: The Mirror of Indian Art
Aryan Books International; New Delhi, India; 2009; 8173053707 / 9788173053702; First Edition; Hard Cover; New; New; 
Printed Pages: 412 with 62 colour illustrations, 213 b/w illustrations, and 27 figures and maps. 031799

Price: 110.00 USD
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4 Devangana Desai
The Religious Imagery of Khajuraho
Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Pvt. Ltd.; New Delhi, India; 1996; 8190018418 / 9788190018418; First Edition; Hard Cover; New; New; 
Printed pages: 300 alongwith 101 colour and 125 b/w ills. 18 figs. 033144

Price: 57.95 USD
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