On the Cusp of an Era

Art in the Pre-Kuṣāṇa World


South Asian religious art became codified during the Kuṣāṇa Period (ca. beginning of the 2nd to the mid 3rd century). Yet, to date, neither the chronology nor nature of Kuṣāṇa Art, marked by great diversity, is well understood. The Kuṣāṇa Empire was huge, stretching from Uzbekistan through northern India, and its multicultural artistic expressions became the fountainhead for much of South Asian Art. The premise of this book is that Kuṣāṇa Art achieves greater clarity through analyses of the arts and cultures of the Pre- Kuṣāṇa World, those lands becoming the Empire. Fourteen papers in this book by leading experts on regional topography and connective pathways; interregional, multicultural comparisons; art historical, archaeological, epigraphic, numismatic and textual studies represent the first coordinated effort having this focus.


EUR €234.00USD $290.00

Biographical Note

Doris Meth Srinivasan is Visiting Scholar at the State University of New York, Stony Brook. She has published extensively on Hindu iconography, Western and local expressions in Gandharan art, plus the seminal Many Heads, Arms and Eyes. Origin, Meaning and Form of Multiplicity in Indian Art (Brill, 1997).

Review Quotes

"... to work through this book is an absolute necessity for everyone dealing with pre- and Kuṣāṇa art and culture." – Harry Falk, Berlin, in: Orientalistische Literaturzeitung, 104 (2009), 4-5
"In her introduction Doris Srinivasan sums up the 'hallmarks characterizing the vitality and creativity of Pre- and early Kusana art' as being adoption, adaptation, and transformation (p. 25). I would argue that these are characteristics of Indian art as a whole, and the papers in this excellent volume testify to some of ways in which this holds true dureing the first centuries before and after the common era." – Sonya Rhie Quintanilla, San Diego Museum of Art, in: JAOS 2009: 129.3


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