With New Light: Mia’s Reinstalled Himalayan, South, and Southeast Asian Art Galleries

October 15, 2020 – October 17, 2021
Gallery 211, Gallery 212, Gallery 213
Free Exhibition

Fresh and engaging displays reintroduce audiences to the interconnected, immensely diverse artistic traditions of South Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Himalayas. Collection highlights, such as a recently conserved 1,000-year-old Indian sculpture of Shiva Nataraja, commingle with new acquisitions, important loans, and extraordinary objects—some at Mia since 1917—on view for the first time. Within each gallery, multiple narratives aim to disentangle complicated histories, evoke reflection, and celebrate the artists who created, and continue to create, a bountiful variety of expressive forms.

Support for the gallery reinstallation provided by the Jane and James Emison Endowment for South Asian and Indian Art.

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Arts of South Asia: A Millennium of Innovation and Expression

This gallery highlights the past 1,000-plus years of artistic production in South Asia, which includes present-day Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Here, cultural streams constantly commingle, the old and the new ceaselessly enmeshing to create one of the most dynamic and distinctive visual cultures in the world.

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Arts of the Himalayas: Visions from the Top of the World

The Himalayan region encompasses the Tibetan Plateau, Nepal, Kashmir, Bhutan, as well as parts of Northern India, China, and Mongolia. Though geographically isolated, its high mountain passes historically allowed for continuous engagement across greater Asia.

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The Arts of Southeast Asia: Distinctive Identities in a Cosmopolitan World

This gallery offers a glimpse onto the emergence of distinctive aesthetic identities of the region, from Ban Chiang (3000 BCE–400 CE) ceramics and monumental Hindu and Buddhist sculpture of the Khmer Empire (802–1437 CE), to Indonesian textiles and works created up to the present day.

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Teacher Resources

Arts of Asia

Explore this teaching and learning resource, designed to help you integrate Asian art and culture into your curriculum. This tool emphasizes interdisciplinary learning with a focus on empathy, creativity, critical thinking, and global understanding.

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