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The Cleveland Museum of Art presents ‘Yoga: The Art of Transformation’

“Yoga: The Art of Transformation” is the world’s first exhibition that highlights Yoga’s visual history.
“Yoga: The Art of Transformation” is the world’s first exhibition that highlights Yoga’s visual history.
Yoga Narashimha, Vishnu in His Man-Lion Avatar, c. 1250. South India. Bronze; h. 55 cm. The Cleveland Museum of Art, Gift of Dr. Norman Zaworski 1973.187

The Cleveland Museum of Art is well known for many firsts and this new exhibit is no different. “Yoga: The Art of Transformation” is the world’s first exhibition that highlights Yoga’s visual history.

The term Yoga refers to the physical, mental and spiritual practices (or disciplines) whose goal is to unite body and mind. The term is collective in that it refers to a variety of schools, practices and goals that include Hinduism and Buddhism (of which Vajrayana, Tibetan Buddhism and Jainism are a part). The direct translation of the term Yoga is “yoking together” such as one would yoke together a group of horses or oxen and has come to mean the yoking together of mind and body so that the two work together in unison.

Yoga has been around since the pre-vedic period of Indian traditions (around 400 CE). It was in the late 19th and early 20th centuries that Yoga found its way to the western world following the efforts of Swami Vivekananda. In 1980 it had a resurgence of interest as people turned to Hatha Yoga as a part of their exercise regimen.

This particular exhibition explores yoga’s core values and teachings through the centuries, its entry into the mainstream global arena and its goals to bring true enlightenment to all practitioners as they discover a new inner power, health and well being. This is all done through the exquisite display of detailed Indian art.

The exhibit contains over 130 works that include sculptures depicting historical and divine yogis, detailed Mughal paintings that illustrate various militant yogis and romantic heroes of its rich history, Islamic divination texts, larger than life scrolls that pinpoint the various chakras (energy centers of the body) as well as 19th century photos and films.

The award winning exhibit (it was awarded The Association of Art Museum Curators’ first place for best exhibition and best exhibition catalogue) will open to the public on June 22, 2014 and will close on September 7, 2014.

The Cleveland Museum of Art is located at 11150 East Boulevard in Cleveland, Ohio 33106.

Tickets to the exhibition “Yoga: The Art of Transformation” are $15.00 for non-members and free to members of the Cleveland Museum of Art and are available at the Museum.

For more information go to: http://www.clevelandart.org/events/exhibitions