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Lions Roar : November 2008
SHAMBHALA SUN NOVEMBER 2008 77 history, RMA has produced thirty-two highly praised exhibits, many of them startlingly ambitious, delving into aspects of Himalayan art and culture that have rarely, if ever, been addressed in a muse- um setting. These include exhibitions on celebrated flying Himalayan mystics, Sikh art and beliefs, female buddhas, and the colorful, magical Buddhist adepts known as siddhas. Currently on display is a highly rated group of artworks from Bhutan, showing through January, 2009, and next year will bring the first of eight annual exhibits, each dealing with a little-known area of Tibetan painting. An exhibition on the Jain religion, rarely discussed in the West, is under development. Several projects launched earlier with the Rubins’ support are housed down the street from the museum and complement its work. Himalayan Art Resources, which is managed by scholar and former Bud- dhist monk Jeff Watt, maintains an ever- growing Web site of astonishing scope. The site, himalyanart.org, has pulled to- gether images from almost eighty differ- ent sources, including private collections, photographic archives, published works, and nearly forty museums in North America, Europe, and Asia. At the annual sleepover called “Peak Experience,” forty children use the museum’s spiral staircase to simulate a climb up Mount Everest . The Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center—down the hall from Himala- yan Art Resources—scans, formats, and distributes scans of 12,000 texts with the goal of creating a digital library. This Web-based resource also provides all of the biographical references for the many identifiable portrait paint- ings and sculpture in the Himalayan Art Project database. The TBRC is di- rected by Gene Smith, a famed Tibetan NOV 74-83.indd 77 NOV 74-83.indd 77 9/1/08 12:23:54 PM 9/1/08 12:23:54 PM