“Civilisations aren't remembered by their business people, Bankers or lawyers. They're remembered by their art.” – Eli Broad.
And what’s the best place to observe these arts than at the museums! Museums are repositories of artistic, cultural, tangible and intangible heritage of a country. India being a country of much celebrated history and past, has innumerable artefacts of beauty and importance. To explore and honour this diversity of artefacts, India Post has issued four commemorative stamps. These stamps depict the treasured art objects exhibited in the museums from across the country.
Airavat: The 25p stamp depicts the “Airavat” from the Kutch Museum, Bhuj. This Airavat which was made in Mandvi in the 18th CE is associated with the Hindu Lord of thunder and lightning, Lord Indra. Airavat or a white elephant with seven trunks and big ears is his vahana (mount).
Lord Indra features in the ancient lores of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. The figure of this mythological white elephant with seven trunks, mounted on wheels is from a Jain temple in the Gujarat region which is well-known for wood carvings and wooden architecture. Its body is painted in the local kamagiri style with flowers and creepers.
Founded in 1877, the Kutch Museum is one of the oldest museums of India. It has the largest existing collection of Kshatrapa inscriptions as well as examples of the extinct Kutchi script (the language is written with Gujarati alphabets now) and an interesting collection of local coins.
Image Courtesy: Mintage World