Q&A: ‘The erotic has never been denied in Hindu tradition’-Editorial-Opinion-The Times of India:
Husain is not anti-Hindu. On the contrary, he is one of the few who constantly engages with Hindu mythology with bold imagination and creativity. Hindu deities have been depicted in the nude and semi-nude since at least the 2nd century AD and similarly in the texts their physical descriptions are explicit. This is because in Hindu tradition, there is a constant intermingling of sacred and profane love and the erotic has never been denied.
Unfortunately, during the colonial period we imported Victorian prudery and now seem to be thriving on it. Finally, Husain’s depictions of Hindu goddesses are hardly erotic
I am so glad to see that there are people working to make inroads on this topic, it frustrates me that with such a history of openness and appreciation for the nude and sexuality there is suddenly fanatical opposition to nude art. Husain is the most famous example but there remain the students who were jailed for creating nude art and riots that have started over a knee jerk reaction to this contentious artform. I think it is a pendulum and I hope that it swings away from the fanatacism that has created so many controversies. My biggest fear is that some of the temples and carvings may be defaced as a result and I dread the thought of losing such beautiful archaeological works. While these militant views exist we cannot learn to appreciate art for what it is, especially the nude.