Friday, February 13, 2009

Let's Dance

I seem to be on a museum trail this week. This shot is another display - and this time I experienced no difficulty. In fact, a museum attendant raced after me with my lens cap which I had dropped. The Tropenmuseum is a fine anthropological museum which no one should ever miss. I have been known to spend hours there. I was again on the floor, taking a photograph of an exhibit, when the picture took my eye. It was too good to miss. What can we say about this beautiful swirl of dress and colour? Dance is both celebration and communication - and Indian religious dancing in particular is a swirl of fabric, feet, sandals, hands and nails. Yeats' words express the fusion of body and soul in dance. "O body swayed to music, O brightening glance, How can we know the dancer from the dance?” In India, the cosmic dance, tandava symbolised creation or destruction. And in Tantric Buddhism, Buddha Amoghasiddhi (lord of the current of life) is also known as the Lord of the Dance.