Slow Summer’s Hourglass Sand

By: Amy Beck, marketing and communications manager on August 26th, 2020

Somehow, summer always seems to slip away before we know it. Only a few days remain to experience this summer’s exhibition, Many Visions, Many Versions: Art from Indigenous Communities in India, on view through August 30.

Whether a summer sunset or delicate wildflower blossom, part of the beauty is its brevity. Pausing to take in the view seems to freeze time, at least for a few instants. Experiencing moments of beauty with others enhances connections with them, too.

After starting wildflowers from seed earlier this year, my husband and I were smitten by the surprising variety of blooms that emerge throughout the season. Our neighbors, who grew up and have family in India, kept those wildflowers watered while we were away camping in July. They knew, after all of our seedling tending and doting, we were a bit over-invested in the flowers’ welfare so didn’t let them wither.

While chatting during a recent walk, our neighbors mentioned enjoying Many Visions, Many Versions and every time I stroll through the galleries, I think of them and smile. The cultural connection began years ago while our neighbors’ parents were visiting from India; they learned of our love of Indian food and invited us for a scrumptious Sunday dinner.

Here are a few ways to savor – especially with others – this summer’s exhibition during its final days.
• Activity Guide – Read, referring to or printing the online version, about the storytellers of the Gond community of India – the Pardhan Gonds – who translate folklore songs into visual art and the Warli people who also tell stories through paintings. Then try using a few basic drawing techniques to illustrate your own story.

• Rangoli – Three floor designs, created by Woodson Art Museum staff using colorful sand, are on view in the lower level, along with a time-lapse video of their creation.

• Art Kits – Rangoli-inspired paper project kits are available for visitors to take with them after enjoying Many Visions, Many Versions in the galleries and the staff-created rangoli in the lower level.

Imagine pausing the passage of time, even for an afternoon. Who knows? Maybe visiting the Woodson Art Museum with others will help slow the slippage of sand through the hourglass of summer.

Sita Devi, Krishna, 1970, mud, oxide colors on particle board, © 2015, courtesy of BINDU Modern Gallery, photo by Sneha Ganguly


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