Release of the French edition of Ramayana de Valmiki , 20 October 2011
20 October 2011
Mr Jean-Marin Schuh, Chargé d’Affaires a.i., in the presence of Mr Alain Juppé, Hon’ble French Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, hadthe pleasure of launching Ramayana de Valmiki illustrated with Indian miniatures from the 16th to the 19th century, Editions Diane de Selliers on Thursday, 20 October 2011.
Dr Karan Singh, Hon’ble M. P. and President, Indian Council for Cultural Relations, andH.R.H. Shriji Arvind Singh Mewar of Udaipur had kindly consented to be present as Special Guests.
Established in Paris in 1992, the publishing house Editions Diane de Selliers is renowned for classic texts illustrated with artistic masterpieces, combining erudition and aesthetics, and publishing just one edition per year. The Diane de Selliers edition of Ramayana de Valmiki offers the complete text of the epic – 48,000 verses divided into seven books. These volumes are illustrated by seven hundred Indian miniatures selected from over five thousand identified works of art from the 16th to 19th century, making the finished product a stunning journey into the heart of Indian art. Presented as a magnificent illustrated boxed set covered with flocked fabric designed by Franz Potisek using Mughal motifs from the text, Ramayana de Valmiki has been printed as a limited edition numbered from 1 to 3,000.
It took more than ten years for founder Diane de Selliers and her staff to identify and select miniatures from all over the world that illustrate the Ramayana. The dazzling anthology includes major works of art conserved in private collections as well as museum collections in India, Europe, the United States, Qatar, Pakistan, Australia, and Canada.
Amina Taha Hussein-Okada, Chief Curator of Indian Art at the Musée Guimet for Asian Art in Paris, has been in charge of the scholarly management of this publication. She is also the author of the 600 annotations inserted in the text, providing the reader with a better understanding of Indian painting, culture, religion, traditions, and rites.
In his moving preface, B.N. Goswamy, professor emeritus of art history at Punjab University, Chandigarh, and a specialist of the Pahari School of painting, reveals the fundamental place the Ramayana occupies in Indian culture and civilisation. By evoking his own relationship to the sacred text, he depicts how the Ramayana remains a constant companion and guide even today.
For photographs of the event, please click here.