Friday, September 23, 2011

Afghanistan Culture

Afghanistan Culture:
                                                        A look at Afghanistan's culture: art, poetry, food, music, clothing, myths and more.
About the Kabul Museum:

 For thousands of years, Afghanistan was a crossroad for trade from India, Iran, and Central Asia. As a result, many treasures and artifacts have been discovered and collected. The Kabul Museum, housed the most comprehensive record of Central Asian history. Many of its pieces have been dated as far back as pre-historic times. One of the museum's largest displays, was the magnificent Bagram Collection. Discovered in 1939, by archaeologists excavating a Kushan fort, it contained an amazing 1,800 pieces from India, Rome, Greece, Egypt, and Central Asia. The Kabul Museum also had one of the largest displays of Greek and Roman coins found near Kabul. This collection was a historical treasure, as it contained coins from numerous civilizations dating from the 8th century B.C. to the late 19th century.

These treasures and many others were tragically lost when the Kabul Museum was bombed in 1993. At first, only the upper galleries suffered losses and looting. The remaining artifacts, were transferred to lower leveled, steel doored vaults. In 1994, the United Nations attempted to stop the looting by repairing the doors, and bricking up the windows. Disappointingly, these attempts failed, and looters continued to plunder 90% of the museum's collections. Both private collectors and antique dealers from as far away as Tokyo, have purchased stolen museum pieces. Looted artifacts have shown up all over the world, and they bring in large sums of money to the criminals.

Kabul Museum:

At one time, Buddhism flourished in Afghanistan and this sculpture is proof of this. This image of Buddha's head is from Shotorak and it stands 22 cm tall. The mass like quality is typical of many of the late Gandhara Buddha images.   
Picture B:                                              

  These figurines are made out of baked clay. The one on the left is 6 cm tall and the one on the right is 5.5 cm. These figurines supposedly represent the great pagan mother goddess, and many similar ones have been found in Southern Afghanistan (Baluchistan).
Picture C:

                    This figure of Maitreya and worshippers from Paitava, stands 25 cm tall. This piece is from the 3rd Century and represents an orientalized Roman sculpture. 

No comments:

Post a Comment