How one historian is using new technology to preserve India’s ancient art


For decades, photographer and art historian Benoy K Behl has used his camera to illuminate dark, mysterious and even forgotten corners of ancient Indian history. He has a lifetime of experience documenting India’s rich artistic heritage, and in showcasing Buddhist art from around the world, including Thailand, Siberia and Uzbekistan.

He’s now set to elaborate on these experiences in December at the India Pavilion in Expo 2020 Dubai, in a talk titled Forgotten Tradition of Ancient Art, which touches on the first 700 years of the world’s Buddhist paintings.

Behl realised he had a passionate interest in photography, history and philosophy when he was in high school in 1970. The first documentary he made on 16 millimetre film was in 1976 – Delhi: The Disappearing City was about the lost monumental heritage of India’s famous capital territory. Since then, he has produced…

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