A Nevada-based Hindu group is up in arms over a mural of the Hindu goddess Kali by artist Chitra Ganesh that appears in the recently opened “Eyes of Time” exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum. Kali, according to Rajan Zed, the president of the Universal Society of Hinduism, is “meant to be revered in temples or home shrines and not to be thrown around loosely in reimagined versions for dramatic effect on museum walls.” Zed is asking the Brooklyn Museum to remove the image of Kali from the exhibit. Hey there, Zed. Have you ever heard of “Piss Christ”?
The mural shows Kali with three legs, three breasts, six arms, and a clock instead of her head. Ganesh also included more than 150 prayer flags above the image, each made from her mother’s old saris and other materials from India, silkscreened with images. Ganesh described her work as and exploration of “themes of femininity and multiplicity using inspiration from the collection of objects at the Brooklyn Museum.”
The Brooklyn Eagle reached out to the Hindu Temple Society of North America, based in Flatbush, which also objected to the mural. “It is indeed very disturbing to see exhibits of the greatly revered and worshiped Hindu goddess Kali portrayed in an erroneous, distasteful, and an insulting way,” said the society’s president Dr. Uma Mysorekar. “This form of depiction of Kali at the Brooklyn Museum is not only incorrect but also insulting to all Hindus. Religious objects or pictures are very sentimental and personal and must not be misrepresented or subjected to mockery. I humbly appeal to the authorities at Brooklyn Museum to remove these displays from the exhibit.”